Dipula Income Fund CEO Izak Petersen. Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL
Dipula Income Fund CEO Izak Petersen. Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL

Diversified real estate investment trust Dipula Income Fund has overcome tough macroeconomic conditions to post a 5.8% increase in combined dividends per share for the year to August, driven entirely by organic growth, it says.

Dipula’s full-year revenue was R1bn. Its property portfolio was valued at R6.9bn at year-end. CEO Izak Petersen has chosen not to make many acquisitions in the past two years, given political uncertainty and a weak economy.

Dipula had still managed to make strategic acquisitions totalling R1.5bn post year-end, which complemented its organic growth, Petersen said.

Distributable earnings for the year grew 11.3% to R428m.

Vacancies in the overall portfolio remained stable year-on-year at 8.5%. Retail vacancies improved from 8.5% to 7.1% and industrial vacancies from 5.9% to 5.4%.

THEY’VE DONE WELL TO FOCUS ON ASSET MANAGING OPPORTUNITIES AND EXTRACTING VALUE FROM THE PORTFOLIO.

Leases worth R631m and covering more than 179,000m² were concluded across all sectors. Rental escalations remained above inflation at 7%.

Dipula sold 27 properties during the year for a total consideration of R295m at an average yield of 10%.

“These disposals reduced the number of properties in our portfolio to 174 compared to 201 properties at the previous year-end, while the valuation remained on par with 2016. This further resulted in an increase in the average size and value per property in line with our strategic intent,” Petersen said.

Management had been vocal on how tough the operating environment was, Nomathibana Matshoba, Catalyst Fund Managers investment analyst said. “But they’ve done well to focus on asset managing opportunities and extracting value from their existing portfolio, implementing redevelopments and revamps and recycling assets to help fund these projects.”

General prevailing trading conditions were expected to continue, and provided they did not worsen materially, Dipula should post dividend growth of around 5% for the year ending August 31 2018, Petersen said.

andersona@businesslive.co.za

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