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News Release

Half Year Results: Operational resilience and improving liquidity

26 November 2020
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Allan Lockhart, Chief Executive commented: “The first half of the year was a period of unprecedented disruption and yet our operational performance has proved to be resilient. We have seen a significant increase in leasing activity, with over half a million square feet of transactions completed, which has led to occupancy in our retail portfolio increasing to more than 96% during the period. This reflects both our affordable rents and focus on essential and convenience retail.

We negotiated almost 300 revised payment agreements with our retail tenants, leading to overall rent collected or moved to alternative payments at 90% of that due. Once pubs were allowed to reopen, we saw a fast rate of revenue recovery over the summer months and we are confident that once lockdown restrictions are ended our pub business will return to growth.

Cash holdings were up by almost £60m during the period and so we ended the first half in an even stronger financial position with £235m of available cash and liquidity. Our loan-to-value (LTV), increased by 1% to 48%, helped by our strong retail and pub revenue recovery, and the excellent progress we made with disposals which were ahead of our target with £50m completed.

While our markets continue to be disrupted by COVID-19 in the short term, given the resilient first-half operational performance and the confidence we have in our portfolio it is the Board’s intention to reinstate a covered dividend at the full year.

Finally, I would like to pay tribute to my father, David Lockhart, who died in September. He was Chief Executive for many years, and the original driving force behind the success of NewRiver. He will be greatly missed by his colleagues and many friends in the industry.”


Financial highlights for HY21 

  • Underlying Funds From Operations (‘UFFO’) of £9.3 million (HY20: £26.4 million)
  • UFFO per share of 3.0 pence (HY20: 8.6 pence)
  • IFRS loss after tax of -£92.3 million (HY20: -£21.3 million) mainly due to non-cash reduction in portfolio valuation
  • EPRA NTA per share of 171 pence (March 2020: 201 pence), impacted by an 8.2% like-for-like valuation decline

 
Operational performance for HY21

  • Completed disposals of £50.2 million, at a blended NIY of 6.7% and 6% discount to March 2020 valuation
  • Collected or alternative payments agreed on 92% of Q1 and 94% of Q2 retail rent due
  • Retail occupancy of 96.2% (31 March 2020: 94.8%); Pubs occupancy of 98.0% (31 March 2020: 97.0%)
  • Completed 504,700 sq ft of new lettings and renewals across the retail portfolio at only a 2.7% discount to March 2020 ERV
  • Strong bounce back in like-for-like performance in our pub portfolio since reopening on 4 July 2020

  ​

Strong cash, Balance Sheet and available liquidity

  • LTV of 48.1% at 30 September 2020 (31 March 2020: 47.1%)
  • Fully unsecured balance sheet provides significant flexibility and capacity
  • No bank refinancing events due until August 2023
  • Cash of £140 million all of which is unrestricted due to Company’s unsecured capital structure
  • Undrawn RCF of £45 million and an approved borrower under the CCFF scheme with a limit of up to £50 million which remains undrawn taking total accessible liquidity to £235 million
  • Investment Grade balance sheet maintained at BBB with Stable Outlook

 

 
 

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For further information:                                                  

Tom Loughran, Head of Investor Relations (NewRiver)
+44 (0)20 3328 5800

Lucy Mitchell, Director of Communications & PR (NewRiver)                       
+44 (0)20 3328 5800     

Gordon Simpson/James Thompson (Finsbury)                                                 
+44 (0)20 7251 3801


About NewRiver

NewRiver REIT plc (‘NewRiver’) is a leading Real Estate Investment Trust specialising in buying, managing and developing essential retail and leisure assets throughout the UK.

Our £1.2 billion portfolio covers 9 million sq ft and comprises 33 community shopping centres, 25 conveniently located retail parks and over 700 community pubs. We hand-picked our assets to deliberately focus on occupiers providing essential goods and services, and avoid structurally challenged sub-sectors such as department stores, mid-market fashion and casual dining. This focus, combined with our affordable rents and desirable locations, delivers sustainable and growing returns for our shareholders, while our active approach to asset management and inbuilt 2.5 million sq ft development pipeline provide further opportunities to extract value from our portfolio.

NewRiver has a Premium Listing on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange (ticker: NRR). Visit www.nrr.co.uk for further information.

LEI Number: 2138004GX1VAUMH66L31

 

NewRiver REIT plc ('NewRiver') is a leading Real Estate Investment Trust specialising in buying, managing, developing and recycling convenience-led, community-focused retail and leisure assets throughout the UK.

 

Our £1.3 billion portfolio covers over 9 million sq ft and comprises 33 community shopping centres, 23 conveniently located retail parks and over 650 community pubs. Having hand-picked our assets since NewRiver was founded in 2009, we have deliberately focused on the fastest growing and most sustainable sub-sectors of the UK retail market, with grocery, convenience stores, value clothing, health & beauty and discounters forming the core of our retail portfolio. This focus, combined with our affordable rents and desirable locations, delivers sustainable and growing returns for our shareholders, while our active approach to asset management and inbuilt 1.9 million sq ft development pipeline provide further opportunities to extract value from our portfolio.

 

NewRiver has a Premium Listing on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange (ticker: NRR) and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 and EPRA indices. Visit www.nrr.co.uk for further information.

NewRiver REIT plc ('NewRiver') is a leading Real Estate Investment Trust specialising in buying, managing, developing and recycling convenience-led, community-focused retail and leisure assets throughout the UK.

 

Our £1.3 billion portfolio covers over 9 million sq ft and comprises 33 community shopping centres, 23 conveniently located retail parks and over 650 community pubs. Having hand-picked our assets since NewRiver was founded in 2009, we have deliberately focused on the fastest growing and most sustainable sub-sectors of the UK retail market, with grocery, convenience stores, value clothing, health & beauty and discounters forming the core of our retail portfolio. This focus, combined with our affordable rents and desirable locations, delivers sustainable and growing returns for our shareholders, while our active approach to asset management and inbuilt 1.9 million sq ft development pipeline provide further opportunities to extract value from our portfolio.

 

NewRiver has a Premium Listing on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange (ticker: NRR) and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 and EPRA indices. Visit www.nrr.co.uk for further information.