Property Flash


June 5 2024 12:40

Retail landlord Vukile Property Fund continued its strong run of financial returns when it released its financials for the year to end-March 2024 on Wednesday.

The company which owns high quality shopping centres in SA and Spain has been listed for two decades and has become a reliable dividend payer in this time. For the financial year to end-March 2024, Vukile declared a final dividend of 72.10 cents per share with a total dividend for the year of 124.20 cents per share, up 10.5% on the prior year. The total dividend of R1.3bn was fully covered by cash from operations of R2.2bn, showing that Vukile had a very healthy balance sheet position.

Laurence RappVukile Property Fund CEO

“This year of outperformance is a testament to our clear strategic direction and unwavering focus on execution which positions us exceptionally well to capitalise on opportunities. This sterling set of results is underscored by Vukile’s astute asset selection, sustained strong operational results, and balance sheet strength supported by robust credit metrics and deep liquidity,” said Vukile’s CEO Laurence Rapp.

“Our South African portfolio is delivering positive numbers, and our Spanish assets are achieving market-leading performance. Vukile is a resoundingly strong, sustainable business,” said Rapp.

Vukile’s management expected to deliver expected funds from operations (FFO) per share growth between 2% and 4% and distribution per share growth between 4% and 6%.

Vukile’s portfolio of retail property assets is valued at R40.2bn and is spread across South Africa and Spain through its 99.5% held Madrid-listed subsidiary Castellana Properties Socimi. As much as 61% of Vukile’s assets are in Spain, and 50% of its earnings are generated in Euros. Vukile is considering acquisitions in Portugal.

Primarily located in townships and rural areas, Vukile’s domestic portfolio of shopping centres achieved like-for-like retail net operating income growth of 5.4%. Retail property valuations increased 5.8% on a like-for-like basis. Leasing reduced the retail portfolio vacancies to 1.9%.

Rental growth rebounded with positive reversions of 2.9%, with 87.0% of leases signed
producing stable or growing rentals. Tenant retention increased to 94% of gross lettable area. The
portfolio achieved trading density growth of 2.4%, led by township and rural shopping centres and
those in the Gauteng, Western Cape and North West provinces.

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