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Big Yellow declares results for the year ended 31 March 2017
Big Yellow declared results for the year ended 31 March earlier today. Below are the quick highlights:
CONTINUED GROWTH IN KEY OPERATING METRICS
· Like-for-like occupancy increased by 2.8 ppts to 78.1%
· 11% increase in adjusted earnings per share and total dividend
· Free cash flow (after net finance costs and pre working capital movements)5 up 10% to £58.3 million
· Acquisition of four store Lock and Leave portfolio in April 2016 for £21 million
- Nine Elms and Twickenham acquired by Big Yellow (combined MLA of 87,000 sq ft)
- Canterbury and West Molesey acquired by Armadillo (combined MLA of 65,000 sq ft)
· Acquisition by Armadillo of three stores from the Quickstore portfolio (Exeter, Plymouth and Torquay, combined MLA
92,000 sq ft) in April 2017 for £4.75 million
· Acquisition in May 2017 of prime London site on the Highway in Wapping, just east of the City, for future redevelopment
Nicholas Vetch, Executive Chairman of Big Yellow, commented:
"Trading over the last few months has been better than we anticipated, and is encouraging as we head into our seasonally stronger summer trading period. Nevertheless, these are uncertain times and we remain fully prepared for any economic reversals which could cause demand to fluctuate.
We can expect to break through 80% occupancy this summer putting us within touching distance of our (for the time being) long held goal of 85%. Occupancy gain remains the primary point of focus.
As our vacant capacity reduces, it increases the imperative to create more. The tight supply of land in our core areas of activity, and a planning regime broadly focussed on housing, remain very significant barriers for our competitors and ourselves. We have the required property and planning skills, an ability to take the necessary risks, a strong balance sheet and we are prepared to take long term views. These factors work in our favour but unlocking new opportunities for new stores remains challenging.
That said, we believe that Big Yellow's market leading brand and operating platform can deliver attractive and sustainable growth over the medium to long term from its existing portfolio."
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