CapitaLand Mall Trust DPU up 3.1% to 2.99 cents for Q4

Buoyed by the acquisition of a 70 per cent stake in Westgate mall (right), CapitaLand Mall Trust posted a 4.3 per cent growth in net property income on the previous year for the fourth quarter to Dec 31, 2018.
Buoyed by the acquisition of a 70 per cent stake in Westgate mall (right), CapitaLand Mall Trust posted a 4.3 per cent growth in net property income on the previous year for the fourth quarter to Dec 31, 2018.PHOTO: CAPITALAND

CapitaLand Mall Trust (CMT), which owns 15 shopping centres in Singapore, saw its net property income and gross revenue grow year on year in the latest quarter, buoyed by the acquisition of a 70 per cent stake in Westgate mall.

It posted a 4.3 per cent growth in net property income on the previous year for the fourth quarter to Dec 31, 2018.

Gross revenue was up by 4.7 per cent to $180.5 million, according to full-year financial results released yesterday.

Higher gross rental income at IMM and Bedok Mall contributed to the increase in gross revenue. But JCube, Lot One Shoppers' Mall and Clarke Quay saw lower occupancies, which ate into revenues.

Investors can look forward to a higher distribution per unit (DPU) of 2.99 Singapore cents in total, against 2.9 Singapore cents for the same quarter in the year before.

Distributable income stood at $108.1 million, or 5.1 per cent more than before. Annualised distribution yield for the three months was 5.22 per cent, based on CMT's closing price on Tuesday.

Mr Tony Tan, chief executive of the manager, noted that CMT had divested Sembawang Shopping Centre in June last year and increased its stake in "a higher-yielding quality asset", Westgate, to spruce up the portfolio.

CMT had a portfolio occupancy rate of 99.2 per cent as at Dec 31 last year, with rental reversion of 0.7 per cent. The weighted-average lease expiry by gross rental income was 1.9 years - excluding Funan, which was closed in July 2016 for redevelopment.

But Mr Tan said Funan is on track to open in the second quarter of this year and has reached leasing of more than 80 per cent, including the leases that are still "under active negotiations".

For the 12 months, CMT clocked net property income of $493.5 million, or 3.2 per cent up on the previous year, on gross revenue growth of 2.2 per cent to $697.5 million.

Distributable income rose by 3.8 per cent to $410.7 million and full-year DPU was 11.5 Singapore cents, against 11.16 Singapore cents the year prior.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 24, 2019, with the headline 'CapitaLand Mall Trust DPU up 3.1% to 2.99 cents for Q4'. Print Edition | Subscribe