back Preliminary Results for the year to 31 March 2010

Helical poised for new phase of growth

Financial Highlights

  • Profit before tax of £7.9m (2009: loss of £71.9m).
  • Valuation of investment properties up 7.9%, like for like, or £13.1m (2009: down 25.7% or £68.0m).
  • Diluted EPRA net asset value, including trading and development stock surplus, down 5% to 272p per share (2009: 286p), after dividends paid and payable in the year of 7.25p (2009: 4.50p).
  • Final dividend payable of 0.25p per share taking total dividends for the year to 4.75p (2009: 4.50p), up 5.6%

Operational Highlights

  • £73m of sales of assets which have reached their full potential during the year and a further £26m since the year end. Sales include £54m of non-income producing assets.
  • Capital recycled into the acquisition, with Joint Venture partners, of £120m of investment assets, of which £50m since the year end.
  • Acquisitions show income return of 21.5% p.a. (income net of interest and all unrecoverable costs divided by equity invested) and offer significant asset management opportunities including letting voids (7% vacant by floor area).
  • Legal agreements have been exchanged to acquire the site at Mitre Square, London EC3. A planning application for a new, high quality office development of 270,000 sq ft NIA has been submitted.
  • Appointed as asset and development manager at 200 Aldersgate Street, 360,000 sq ft of refurbished offices in the City.
  • Appointed development manager at Fulham Wharf, London SW6 for a major foodstore and residential application.
  • Turawa Retail Park, in Poland comprising 41,000 sq m, forward sold to Standard Life and construction commenced on site. Value circa €75m.

Giles Weaver, Chairman, commented:

"Since we last reported to shareholders, the Group has successfully re-entered the investment market by acquiring, with joint venture partners, properties valued at more than £120m at yields that offer substantial potential for capital growth, whilst providing excellent cash returns."

"This move back into investment properties marks the start of a re-alignment of the Group’s activities as we realise cash from the sale of our industrial and change of use development portfolio and re-invest these funds into high yielding investment assets with good growth prospects as well as Central London office and other development opportunities."

"The Helical brand is ideally placed to take advantage of any opportunities as a result of its strong balance sheet, well-established industry, banking and investor partnerships coupled with the experience and skills of its management team."

Michael Slade, Chief Executive, added:

"In every market cycle, Helical has experienced a period during which it repositions its business to prepare for opportunities in forthcoming years. It is no accident that half of our portfolio is made up of development and trading property rather than mainstream investment stock. Now is the time to be working up major projects, both in Central London offices and in large residential plays in West London, as well as keeping an eye open for attractive investment opportunities as and when they arise."

"Interestingly, we made our first major investment acquisition in four and a half years when buying the Clyde Shopping Centre in Glasgow with joint venture partners last autumn. This was followed by the purchase of nine industrial and office investments last month. More recently we have been appointed ‘asset and development manager’ at the 360,000 sq ft City office property, 200 Aldersgate, reflecting our long experience of City development. Legal agreements have been exchanged to acquire the site at Mitre Square, London EC3 from the City of London and Ansbacher and a planning application for a new, high quality office development of 270,000 sq ft NIA has been submitted. A start on site could be as early as the first quarter of 2011. With responsibility for some 3,500 residential units to be built in West London at Fulham Wharf, Hammersmith Town Hall and White City, in addition to our growing Retirement Villages portfolio, we look also to benefit from an improving residential market."

"Having successfully navigated our way through the crisis period and in doing so outperformed our peers, we now look to monetising our portfolio of opportunity, sharing risk with partners, and maintaining a strong balance sheet."

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
Website: www.helical.co.uk

Financial Dynamics 020 7831 3113
Stephanie Highett/Dido Laurimore/Laurence Jones

Preliminary Results for the year to 31 March 2010 (in pdf format).