Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust's Sandhill Plaza (Photo: Colliers International)Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust's Sandhill Plaza (Photo: Colliers International)

Singapore-listed, China-heavy retail and office REIT, Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust, announced on 27 April that it has achieved a distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.923 Singapore cents for its 4Q FY15/16, an increase of 10.4% over the 1.742 cents paid in the same period for the last financial year.

Distributable income for the period increased by 11.9% to SGD53.02 million. Correspondingly gross revenue and net property income (NPI) for the period came in 15.2% and 17.3% higher at SGD87.83 million and SGD73.02 million respectively.

“The year-on-year growth in revenue and NPI was mainly due to strong rental uplifts from both Festival Walk and Gateway Plaza, additional income contribution from Sandhill Plaza which was acquired in June 2015, and the appreciation of HKD and RMB against SGD”, said the REIT in its statement on the results.

DPU for FY15/16 was 7.248 cents, an increase of 10.8% from the 6.543 cents paid in FY14/15.

Portfolio occupancy as at 31 March 2016 was at 98.6% with a weighted average lease expiry (WALE) of 2.6 years by gross rental income. The REIT’s Festival Walk property continues to see 100% occupancy and high average rental uplift of 37% for those leases that expired in FY15/16.

“However, given the weakening retail environment, rental growth is expected to moderate going forward”, said the REIT, setting expectations. Sandhill Plaza too, remained fully occupied.

Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust’s aggregate leverage improved from 41.4% as of 31 December 2015 to 39.5% as at 31 March 2016 with an average all-in cost of debt of 2.83%, an increase from 2.67% as at 31 December 2015.

“Demand for Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust’s three high-quality and well-located properties is expected to remain resilient, adding much stability to the portfolio’s rental income”, said Cindy Chow, CEO of the REIT’s manager in a statement on the outlook ahead.

“We will continue to focus on driving the performance of the existing assets while exploring acquisition opportunities that would further enhance the growth of the portfolio, and provide stable and steady growth in DPU to the unitholders”, she added.

Units of Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust finished the trading day about 0.5% higher from its previous close on the Singapore Exchange to end at SGD0.99.

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.