DENTIAL landlord Grainger yesterday pledged to reduce its net debt to under £1bn over the next 12 months as it posted a strong set of full-year results.
The FTSE 250 residential property owner-manager said net asset value increased 3.2 per cent to 223p for the year to 30 September, thanks to its focus on the better-performing London and south east markets, which now make up 63 per cent of its business.
Chief executive Andrew Cunningham told City A.M: “For a number of years we have outperformed the residential market in terms of valuation and sales thanks to our focus on the south east and we are very pleased with that.”
The group posted a year-on year-growth of 7.4 per cent in London with central London showing the highest growth at 12 per cent.
That compared with a 1.7 per cent fall in value across its properties in Scotland and the north east.
“More recently, however, there are some signs of stability in the regions as confidence improves at the lower end of the market where much of Grainger’s stock is priced,” the company said.
Debt was cut by £260m to £1.19bn in the period and Grainger plans to reduce it further to £1bn this year.
Commenting on the group’s prospects chairman Robin Broadhurst said: “Grainger remains uniquely placed to take a leading role in, and to benefit from, opportunities currently arising in all parts of the residential property market, many of which have clear Government support. Over a period of time, we will increase our exposure to rental property through our build to rent and affordable housing initiatives.”