High rises are shown against a clear blue sky in the central business district of Brisbane in Australia. Picture: 123RF/ALAN BILSBOROUGH
High rises are shown against a clear blue sky in the central business district of Brisbane in Australia. Picture: 123RF/ALAN BILSBOROUGH

Investec Australia Property Fund, which recently listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), said on Wednesday the financial boost from that listing meant it was now well positioned to make further acquisitions.

Fund CEO Graeme Katz said the A$161m (R1.6bn) raised during listing was used to address its debt, with its gearing ratio below its own target. The fund was seeking to take advantage of healthy economic growth in major Australian metropolitan areas.

“Our portfolio is in good shape on the ground, we have 99.9% occupancy,” said Katz. “Our low gearing gives us further opportunity to add value to our portfolio.”

The fund listed on the ASX in May, having listed on the JSE in 2013. It managed 31 properties across Australia and New Zealand as of the end of September, a portfolio worth about A$1.2bn.

The fund trimmed its dividend by 0.26% to 4.79 Australian cents in its six months to end-September, but has kept its full-year guidance unchanged at 8.88c per share.

Interim revenue rose 6.5% to A$47.9m, while operating profit fell 10.6% to A$29m.

The fund’s share price has outperformed the JSE property index so far in 2019, rising 28.7%, compared with a 5.03% fall in the index.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za