British Land has unveiled a £300m share buyback programme and investors love it

 
Emma Haslett
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British Land netted £575m from the sale of the Cheesegrater (Source: Getty)

Shares in FTSE 100-listed landlord British Land bounced this morning, after it unveiled a £300m share buyback programme.

The company's share price rose 2.8 per cent to 621p in early trading, after it said it plans to execute the entire share buyback during the current financial year.

What has sparked such generosity? "Since the year end, [we have] continued to sell into a strong investment market," said British Land in a statement today.

"However, currently, opportunities to purchase at attractive returns are more limited, and investment in [our] shares at the prevailing discount offers better value than further asset acquisitions."

Chris Grigg, its chief executive, added: "With substantial proceeds being realised from our disposals programme, we do not expect any material change in our loan to value ratio as a result of the share buyback.

"We retain significant resources to develop the pipeline of development opportunities we have created and the flexibility to respond to any changes in market conditions."

Earlier this year British Land sold its stake in the Leadenhall Building, otherwise known as the Cheesegrater, for £575m, while it said it made 370,000 sq ft of lettings and renewals during the first quarter at 7.8 per cent ahead of estimated recovery value (ERV), while another 870,000 sq ft of space is under offer or in advanced negotiations.

The company also took the opportunity to confirm its first interim divi payment for the quarter to the end of June will be 7.52p per share, three per cent higher than last year.

Read more: British Land boosted by Cheesegrater sale despite Brexit uncertainty

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