back Half Year Results for the six months to 30 September 2008
  • Profit before tax for the half year of £12.7m (2007: £7.3m).
  • Diluted EPRA net assets per share of 333p (31 March 2008: 352p). In line with its long-held practice, the Company did not undertake a revaluation of its investment portfolio, nor re-assess the surplus on its development and trading stock, at the half year.
  • Interim dividend maintained at 1.75p per share (2007: 1.75p)
  • Diluted EPRA earnings per share of 8.5p (2007: 9.7p)
  • Cash and unused bank facilities of £95m ensuring the Company is well positioned to capitalise on market opportunities; £50m of new facilities secured and an extension of £38m of short-term facilities agreed during the year to date.

Commenting on the results, Giles Weaver, Chairman, said:

“Whilst we had scaled down our investment portfolio over recent years, the Company is not immune from the impact of rising capitalisation rates which reduce the value of our remaining investment assets. Our development and trading stock has the benefit of being diversified across a wide range of sectors and activities but properties are taking longer to sell and are achieving lower prices.

However, in such torrid market conditions we expect to see buying opportunities that arise only once or twice in a property career. We have built up our own cash resources and agreed joint venture arrangements with well capitalised partners who are eager to invest alongside us where and when we find compelling value.

In summary, we do not underestimate the challenge of preserving the value of our existing assets in the light of prevailing market conditions but are genuinely excited about the scale of opportunities ahead. Your executive directors have much of their wealth invested in Helical shares and remain committed to protecting the value of the business and sustaining its long term track record of outperformance. To quote John F Kennedy “The Chinese use two brush strokes to write the word ‘crisis’. One brush stroke stands for danger, the other for opportunity. In a crisis, be aware of the danger – but recognise the opportunity.”

For further information, please contact:

Helical Bar plc 020 7629 0113
Michael Slade (Chief Executive)  
Nigel McNair Scott (Finance Director)  
Address: 11-15 Farm Street, London W1J 5RS
Fax: 020 7408 1666
Financial Dynamics 020 7831 3113
Stephanie Highett/Dido Laurimore  

View the full Interim Results 2008 (in pdf format).