Ascendas India Trust reports drop in quarterly payout on rupee weakness

Ascendas India Trust (a-iTrust), which owns business space in India, has reported an 8 per cent drop in income available for distribution to $11.2 million for the third quarter.

Distribution per unit fell by 9 per cent to 1.1 cents for the three months to Dec 31.

Total property income also dropped by 9 per cent to $29 million while net property income eased by 1 per cent to $18.4 million.

These falls were mainly due to the sharp depreciation of the Indian rupee against the Singapore dollar.

a-iTrust has a diversified portfolio of five IT Parks in Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad, spanning 6.9 million square feet of completed properties as at Dec 31.

Aviator, a 600,000 sqft building, received its Occupancy Certificate on Jan 8, bringing total completed floor area to 7.5 million sq ft.

The trust also holds vacant land with potential built up area of 1.9 million sq ft.

High occupancy levels of 96 per cent as at year end were sustained as a-iTrust's properties continued to attract and retain tenants.

From April 1 to Dec 31, about 1.32 million sq ft became available via expiry or pre-termination, of which 93 per cent of the leases were renewed.

Including 87,707 sq ft of forward leasing, a total of 1.4 million sq ft was leased during the quarter.

This does not include the leases that have been committed in Aviator building.

a-iTrust said it will continue to focus on enhancing the competitiveness of its properties to distinguish itself from competitors, maintaining financial discipline, and seeking growth opportunities.

It noted that its performance will be influenced by its tenants' business performance and outlook, and condition of each city's real estate market.