At­tacq to fo­cus on in­come dis­tri­bu­tion

The Star Early Edition - - COMPANIES - Roy Cokayne

AT­TACQ, the listed cap­i­tal-growth prop­erty com­pany, has de­cided to tran­si­tion to a real es­tate in­vest­ment trust (Reit) fo­cused on dis­tri­bu­tions and dis­tri­bu­tion growth.

Morné Wilken, the chief ex­ec­u­tive of At­tacq, said yes­ter­day that, sub­ject to the ap­proval of the JSE and re­ceiv­ing Reit sta­tus for its fi­nan­cial year start­ing on July 1 next year, At­tacq’s strat­egy would in­clude in­come dis­tri­bu­tion.

Melt Ham­man, the chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer of At­tacq, said that, be­fore it be­comes a Reit and for its fi­nan­cial year to June next year, At­tacq would adopt a div­i­dend pol­icy in terms of which it would dis­trib­ute its avail­able funds.

Ham­man said At­tacq was tar­get­ing a maiden div­i­dend pay­ment of 73c a share from its ex­ist­ing port­fo­lio and its in­vest­ment in MAS Real Es­tate for the year to June next year, with 20-per­cent growth a year for the three years there­after.

Wilken said that since At­tacq had listed on the JSE in Oc­to­ber 2013 it has grown its as­sets by 80 per­cent, from R15.1 bil­lion to R27.1 bil­lion.

Since list­ing it has com­pleted 32 de­vel­op­ments, in­clud­ing the Mall of Africa and 25 other de­vel­op­ments in Water­fall in Midrand, to add 434 154m² of gross let­table area to its port­fo­lio.

“It is now ap­pro­pri­ate for At­tacq to re-po­si­tion it­self and adopt a strat­egy which in­cludes in­come dis­tri­bu­tion,” he said.

Ham­man said the repo­si­tion­ing to achieve Reit sta­tus was un­der way and in­cluded the re­duc­tion of debt fa­cil­i­ties us­ing the pro­ceeds from the dis­posal of At­tacq’s Cen­tral and Eastern Euro­pean in­vest­ments, the op­ti­mi­sa­tion of its bal­ance sheet, and the sale of cer­tain non-core as­sets, with the pro­ceeds de­ployed to en­hance sus­tain­able and grow­ing dis­tributable earn­ings.

Wilken said At­tacq’s value propo­si­tion had four key driv­ers: its qual­ity op­er­a­tional port­fo­lio, its Water­fall de­vel­op­ment port­fo­lio, its strate­gic in­vest­ment in MAS Real Es­tate, and its re­tail in­vest­ments in the rest of Africa.

He said At­tacq’s South African port­fo­lio was “premier qual­ity” com­pared with other listed prop­erty com­pa­nies, and its Water­fall port­fo­lio a was dif­fer­en­tia­tor that would al­low the growth in dis­tri­bu­tions to flow through to share­hold­ers.

Wilken said At­tacq had about 1.2 mil­lion square me­tres of re­main­ing de­vel­opable bulk in the Water­fall area, of which 608 000m² was ser­viced and ready for the roll-out of com­mer­cial, res­i­den­tial and in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ments.

He said the se­cured Water­fall de­vel­op­ment port­fo­lio to­talled 175 545m².

In ad­di­tion to the 1.2 mil­lion square me­tres of de­vel­opable bulk, At­tacq had a 20-per­cent in­ter­est in a joint ven­ture with San­lam Prop­er­ties that held light-in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ment rights to 635 425m² of bulk land in Water­fall, he said.

Wilken said At­tacq’s de­vel­op­ment port­fo­lio, which com­prised de­vel­op­ments un­der con­struc­tion, va­cant land and its in­vest­ment in the San­lam joint ven­ture, to­talled R3.3 bil­lion at the end of De­cem­ber.

Shares in At­tacq rose 1.26 per­cent yes­ter­day to close at R17.65.

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