Singapore-listed Retail REIT Frasers Centrepoint Trust (FCT) (SGX:J69U) has announced a Distribution Per Unit (DPU) of 2.70 cents for the period from 1 January to 31 March 2013 (2Q13), a climb of 8.0 percent as compared to the 2.5 cents distributed in the same period a year ago.

Frasers Centrepoint Trust
Frasers Centrepoint has attributed the rise in gross revenue to higher contributions from Northpoint and Causeway Point (pictured above). 

FCT's 2Q13 gross revenue grew 8.4% year-on-year to $39.81 million on higher contributions from Causeway Point and Northpoint, suburban shopping malls in the northern part of Singapore which are directly connected to busy public transportation hubs.

Revenue from Causeway Point grew 14.5% to $19.2 million, compared to the same period a year ago when the mall was still undergoing refurbishment. The growth was attributed to the higher number of lease commencements, higher contributions from turnover rents, better rental rates achieved for new and renewed leases and improved income from short-term leases of common space.

Revenue for Northpoint grew 5.9% year on year to $12.1 million, mainly due to higher rental rates achieved for new and renewed leases.

Net property income in 2Q13 rose 9.7% year-on-year to $28.75 million, which is a new record for a quarter. The income available for distribution achieved for the quarter was $23.48 million, of which $22.25 million will be paid as distribution to unitholders.

FCT’s average portfolio occupancy as at 31 March 2013 improved to 98.2% from 97.2% in the preceding quarter. In particular, occupancy level at Causeway Point improved to 99.6% from 96.4%, after several new tenants completed their fit-out and commenced business between January and February 2013.

During the quarter, a total of 22,431 square feet of net lettable area was renewed with a 10.1% increase in the average rental over the preceding leases. For the six months year-to-date, the average rental reversion achieved for the portfolio was 6.6%.

FCT’s financial position remains robust wh its gearing level at 30.5 percent as at 31 March 2013. However the average cost of borrowings for 2Q13 rose to 2.73 percent, a slight increase from 2.70 percent in the previous quarter. The weighted average debt maturity of FCT stood at 3.35 years as at 31 March 2013 and the Trust has no significant refinancing needs in the near-term.

Dr Chew Tuan Chiong, Chief Executive Officer of the REIT manager (Frasers Centrepoint Asset Management Ltd) said, “We are pleased that FCT has continued to deliver robust performance in 2Q13 with fresh highs in revenue, NPI and distributable income, and our financial position remains strong. Moving forward, we expect Causeway Point and Northpoint to continue to drive growth, with the rest of the malls remaining stable. Causeway Point continues to benefit from the recently completed refurbishment, shopper traffic has increased 22% compared to the same period a year ago and we see room for traffic to grow further.”

Units of FCT ended the day 2.75 percent higher to close at S$2.24

By Ridzwan Rahmat

Ridzwan has been analysing REITs and business trusts since 2008, and personally manages a portfolio comprising mainly of SGX-listed REITs. He founded REITsWeek in 2013.