ESR-Reit posts 11% drop in Q2 DPU

SINGAPORE - ESR-Reit, formerly Cambridge Industrial Trust, reported on Thursday (July 13) an 11.3 per cent drop in distribution per unit (DPU) to 0.956 Singapore cents for the second quarter ended June 30.

For the quarter, gross revenue dipped 2.2 per cent to S$27.7 million from S$28.3 million a year ago.

Its net property income fell 9.2 per cent to S$19.2 million, mainly due to a loss of revenue during the conversion of properties from single-tenanted to multi-tenanted; an increase in property operating expenses and maintenance costs as a result of the conversions; and property divestments in full year 2016.

It also cited a one-off accrual of costs related to a fire at its Jurong East industrial building at 30 Toh Guan Road in May this year. The building's manager, ESR Funds Management(S) said the fire was mostly confined to the building's facade.

Mr Adrian Chui, chief executive and executive director of ESR Funds, noted: "Although challenging business conditions continue to bring about a slowdown in the industrial property market, we are establishing the foundation for ESR-Reit's next stage of development by employing a proactive asset and lease management strategy and exercising a prudent capital and risk management approach to our business."

The distribution payment date is August 31, with July 21 being the book closure date. As at 10.25am on Thursday, ESR-Reit units were 0.8 per cent or 0.5 cent lower at 59.5 Singapore cents.