Citadines Connect Sydney Airport. (Photo: Ascott REIT)Citadines Connect Sydney Airport. (Photo: Ascott REIT)

Ascott Residence Trust (Ascott REIT) has reported higher distribution figures on the back of better revenue, especially from its Singapore and UK properties.

The hospitality REIT reported a distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.45 Singapore cents for its 1Q 2019 on 30 April, an increase of 7% year-on-year.

The hospitality REIT’s gross profit increased 2% to SGD49.5 million, while revenue climbed 3% to SGD115.9 million.

Correspondingly, unitholders’ distribution for 1Q 2019 rose 8% to SGD31.5 million.

Ascott REIT has attributed this increase to better operating performance, lower financing costs, and higher one-off realised exchange gain of SGD1.0 million.

“Ascott REIT continued to deliver stable returns in the first quarter this year due to strong operating performance, with higher contributions particularly from Singapore and the United Kingdom”, said Bob Tan, Chairman of the REIT’s manager.

“Our debt headroom of close to SGD900 million will give us the financial flexibility to pursue accretive acquisitions from our sponsor The Ascott Limited, and third parties”, he added.

The REIT’s RevPAU for 1Q 2019 was SGD133, a year-on-year increase of 3%.

Its gearing for the quarter was at 35.7%, with 80% of its borrowings on fixed interest rates.

Ascott REIT is currently trading about 1% lower from its previous session on the Singapore Exchange, last changing hands at SGD1.20.

Related: Ascott REIT expects benefits for Vietnam portfolio amidst trade tensions

By Shariffa Al-Habshee

Shariffa joined REITsWeek in 2017, and monitors Asia-Pacific REITs for the publication.