The Courier-Mail

Westfield puts four centres on sale

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WESTFIELD’S Australian business is selling four shopping centres, including its Strathpine site in Brisbane.

Scentre Group, which operates Westfield shopping centres in Australia and New Zealand, expects to reap $783 million and funnel the proceeds into redevelopm­ents.

It will also sell its Figtree, Warrawong and North Rocks centres in NSW.

Chief executive Peter Allen said a review of the centres found their future returns for the company would be weaker than expected and the money tied up in them could be better deployed elsewhere.

The funds will go into the ongoing redevelopm­ent of its $30 billion worth of centres and the search for opportunit­ies to develop new sites or redevelop existing centres.

Scentre was spun off from Westfield in 2014 to allow the latter to focus on the US, UK and European markets.

Scentre made a profit of almost $1.1 billion in the six months to June 30 and said specialty retail sales – a key driver of rental income – rose 6.1 per cent in that period.

During July, sales were up seven per cent. The company’s shares rose 13 to $3.74.

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