Ascott Residence Trust posted a distribution per unit (DPU) of 2.04 cents for the fourth quarter ended 31 Dec, flat from the corresponding period a year ago, due in part to a rights issue which took place last year.
Adjusting for a one-off realised exchange gain, the effects of the rights issue in March last year, contributions from Ascott Orchard Singapore as well as a divestment gain, DPU would have actually gone up by 7 per cent to 2.07 cents.
Revenue for the quarter under review rose 6 per cent to $134.5 million, boosted by contributions from acquisitions made last year, while gross profit was up 6 per cent at $61.8 million, in line with higher revenue.
New properties were acquired last year in Frankfurt, Hamburg, New York and Singapore.
Unit holders' distribution jumped 30 per cent to $43.9 million, bolstered by a one-off partial distribution of the gains from the divestment of Citadines Biyun Shanghai and Citadines Gaoxin Xi'an of $6.5 million.
Revenue per available unit (RevPAU) rose 5 per cent year on year. In particular, RevPAU for Belgium jumped 22 per cent due to stronger corporate demand, while in the Philippines, it grew 13 per cent owing to increased revenue from the upgraded Somerset Millennium Makati. RevPAU in China was also up in double-digit percentage terms, at 12 per cent.
AT A GLANCE
REVENUE:$496.3 million (+4%)GROSS PROFIT:$226.9 million (+2%)DISTRIBUTION PER UNIT:7.09 cents (-14%)
The distribution for the six month period ended Dec 31, which stands at 3.73 cents per unit, will be paid out on Feb 28.
For the full financial year, DPU totalled 7.09 cents, down 14 per cent. After adjusting for the rights issue, one-off items and divestment gain, DPU would have been up 5 per cent to 7.99 cents.
Revenue for the year rose 4 per cent to $496.3 million while gross profit edged up 2 per cent to $226.9 million. Meanwhile, unit holders' distribution for the 12-month period jumped 13 per cent to a record $152.2 million.
Corporate demand has been increasing, with business driven from sectors such as fintech, IT, banking and consultancy firms, highlighted Ms Beh Siew Kim, chief executive of Ascott Residence Trust Management, at a briefing yesterday.
"Hopefully, there'll be some pick up (from the) oil and gas (sector) this year," she said, noting that there has been a trend towards a shorter length of stay as guests are less keen to commit to a one-or two-year contract upfront.
"Sometimes, although they stay with us for six months, they may just do a monthly contract, on a renewal basis."
The average length of stay for its portfolio is three months.