CapCo enjoys value hike and sells properties in West End

Kasmira Jefford
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CAPITAL & COUNTIES (CapCo), the owner of Covent Garden Market and Earl’s Court, has unveiled an 11.7 per cent hike in net asset value and the disposal of its West End properties.

The listed developer reported a jump in NAV to 166p per share in 2011 thanks in part to a rise in its total property value of 9.2 per cent like-for-like to £1.6bn.

Profit before tax was £161.9m, up from £132.5 the previous year, while net rental income stayed the same at £69m. Revenue fell from £113.7m to £108.4m.

The group said its exhibition business at Earl’s Court and Olympia performed in line with expectations and proposals for the redevelopment of the estate passed several milestones, including the submission of planning applications for Seagrave Road and the wider scheme.

At Covent Garden, the group made £113m of key property acquisitions and a series of tenancy changes which helped boost the estate’s value to £808m.

Ian Hawksworth, chief executive, said: “The transformation of Covent Garden into one of the most vibrant retail and leisure destinations in London continues to create value and attract new brands.”

CapCo also said it had agreed to sell half of its share in £150m worth of West End property to Great Portland Estates out of the pair’s joint venture Great Capital Partnership.

The deal includes three prime properties on Regent Street, which are home to tenants including the Body Shop, jeweller Folli Follie and shoemaker Russell & Bromley. The two other properties are located on Broadwick Street and Dufours Place.

GPE chief executive Toby Courtauld said in a statement: “Whilst perhaps non-core to GCP, these are classic Great Portland assets so it makes good sense to buy in the half we don’t already own.

“The acquisition both enables the refurbishment of Walmar House and 13/14 Great Castle Street in the near term and provides medium term repositioning opportunities in both Soho and Regent Street with a solid income return in the meantime.”

In a separate announcement, Great Portland said it had signed a £150m five-year revolving credit facility, with four banks including Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds Banking Group and Santander.

The deal replaces an existing £50m facility, which was due to mature in July and has a headline margin of 175 basis points more than the London interbank offered rate.

It also has an existing £350m revolving credit that matures in November 2015.