Source - Alliance News

Shaftesbury Capital PLC on Monday hailed a strong start to the Christmas trading period as the second half of 2023 recorded ‘excellent’ performance.

The London- and Johannesburg-listed was formed in March after merger between Capital & Counties Properties PLC and Shaftesbury PLC.

From July 1 to November 15, the property group said 440 leasing transactions were completed, representing £30.2 million of rent, 9% ahead of December 31, 2022 estimated rental value.

Over this period, there was ‘excellent’ leasing momentum across all uses, with 220 leasing transactions signed so far in the second half at rents on average 6% ahead of June 2023 estimated rental value, Chief Executive Officer Ian Hawksworth said. He noted there was a ‘strong’ leasing pipeline.

Over this period, high footfall across its prime portfolio in the West End signalled a strong start to the Christmas trading period, with customers reporting sales in aggregate 12% above 2022 levels and 16% above 2019 levels.

As at November 15, the vacancy rate was at 2.2% of estimated rental value available to let, compared to 2.5% at June 30.

Shaftesbury disposed of £82 million worth of assets.

‘Our excellent performance has continued into the second half, with a strong start to the Christmas trading period,’ Hawksworth said. ‘The West End is one of the most vibrant global destinations with an unrivalled concentration of entertainment and cultural attractions.’

Over the medium term, Shaftesbury said it targets 5% to 7% rental growth per year.

Shares in Shaftesbury rose 2.1% to 118.80 pence on Monday morning in London. They were up 1.2% at R 28.08 in Johannesburg.

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