Spain’s Merlin reveals cash distribution for 2015

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Spanish real estate investment trust Merlin Properties estimates a cash distribution of over €60m for 2015 financial year, as notified by the company to the CNMV (Spanish Stock Market Authority).

This remuneration, which will be paid fully in cash, will amount to over €0.45 per share, distributed partly as a dividend and partly as a share premium refund.

The decision to announce the shareholders remuneration was taken after concluding the financing of the company’s assets. These were financings finalized ahead of schedule and provided a significant reduction in financial expenses and principal amortization.

Subsequently, Merlin Properties has managed to optimize its capital structure, with a leverage ratio of ca. 40%, a weighted average maturity of more than 9 years and an average debt service, including interest and principal repayments, much lower than that in place prior to the financing of Tree Inversiones (BBVA bank branches), signed on 30 December 2014.

The shareholders remuneration for 2015 will be paid in two instalments, September 2015 and 2016, once the AGM approves the previous year’s accounts. With this payment, MERLIN Properties would deliver a remuneration rate that is highly competitive by international standards and above the IBEX 35 average.

Merlin Properties has formulated the 2014 consolidated financial statements, with gross rental income of €56.6m, EBITDA of €38m and net profit of €49.7m, in accordance with IFRS.

Taking into account EPRA standards, 2014 EPRA earnings were €20.4m. Finally, including the accounting depreciation of its assets, as required by Spanish GAAP, the individual net result for the group’s parent company is negative (€-3.1m), which means that no dividend allocated to the 2014 financial year would be paid.

These results show the performance of the company from 30 June 2014 – when the company was listed on the stock exchange as a REIT to the end of the financial year. During such six month period, Merlin Properties has deployed the total amount of funds obtained at IPO and has constructed a portfolio of high quality assets with a current market value of €2.23bn and a gross leasable area of 680,045 square metres. Annualizing the six months period, the portfolio would have reached €128.3m of gross rental income, with an average gross yield of 6.03%.


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