Westfield eyes London listing for overseas empire as earnings rise

 
Kasmira Jefford
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AUSTRALIAN shopping centre giant Westfield said yesterday it is eyeing a listing in London after a full break-up of its Australian and international retail businesses.

Westfield announced plans in December to sell its 50 per cent stake in its mature Australian and New Zealand assets to focus on the fast-growing part of the business – its US and European malls.

Westfield will sell its stake in these assets to The Westfield Retail Trust, which owns the other 50 per cent, leaving the company with 44 shopping centres in the US and Europe worth around $18bn (£10.8bn). The Westfield Retail Trust – renamed Scentre Group – will still be listed in Australia but the board are still considering where to list its international arm.

Westfield group chief executive Peter Lowy said: “We’re going to look at listing the company in New York, London or here in Australia – all of them are under consideration”.

His comment came as the company reported a 3.1 per cent rise in 2013 sales at its two London shopping centres Westfield London and Statford City. In total, the sales amounted to almost £2bn.

Total group funds from operations rose 2.3 per cent to 66.5 Australian cents a share.