Shopping centre owners lose out on retail but stay positive
by William Mata | 12th December 2018
BRITISH Land will continue to focus on retail projects, such as Royal Victoria Place, despite recording a half year loss.
The property investor, which bought the Tunbridge Wells shopping centre earlier this year, saw their portfolio fall 1.9 per cent to £12.9billion from March to September.
Financial reports show the firm recorded a £42million overall pre-tax loss in the period.
The situation would have been worse had it not been for their London office portfolio, which attracted a 5.8 per cent increase in like-for-like rents.
Chief Executive Chris Grigg said: “This has been another period of good operational and strategic progress.
“We expect retail to remain challenging in both the occupier and investment markets as the impact of long-term structural change is compounded by short-term headwinds.
“Against this backdrop, our strategy is clear, consistent and focused on the long term.”
The FTSE 100 company owns several shopping centres, most notably Sheffield’s Meadowhall.
Their retail operation was not helped by Poundland and Fabb Sofas shops both falling into administration, and Mothercare moving out of several malls, including Royal Victoria Place.
Their combined lost rents totalled a reported £6million.
A spokesman commented: “Our focus continues to be on well-located, high quality, multi-let assets with mixed use potential.
“This strategy underpins our acquisition of Royal Victoria Place in Tunbridge Wells, an affluent town with heritage architecture in London’s commuter zone with an undersupply of good quality retail.”