EPP may sell assets to reduce debt


EPP may sell assets to reduce debt

Published Date: 2020-09-28 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

EPP may sell assets to reduce debt

The Polish landlord is not paying an interim dividend and is planning disposals to bring down its loan to value.

EPP's shares fell on Friday after it said it wouldn't pay an interim dividend and may also sell some assets or introduce partners to some of its operations to bring down debt.

In a further trading statement, the Polish real estate company revised earnings guidance for the year to end-December to between 4.75 and 5.25 euro cents per share. It attributed the upward move to the recovery in its operations and the progress made in the last couple of months with renegotiated leases.

EPP, previously called Echo Polska Properties, said steps taken by the Polish Government, particularly the decision to open shopping centres earlier than in most European countries, had enabled the economy to get on a path of smooth recovery from the Covid-related shock. This had allowed shopping centres to reopen sooner than most other countries. However, it said its business had still been impacted materially after tenants were released from paying rent to retail landlords during the hard lockdown.

EPP said the necessity to continue providing financial support to tenants in the second half of the year would result in a significant decline in revenue and it was focusing on initiatives to strengthen its balance sheet and retain maximum liquidity. It also planned to reduce its loan to value by selling some assets or introducing joint-venture partners over the next 12 to 18 months.

EPP said it would assess a final dividend for the year when it releases its annual results next March. Its shares fell 5.9% to R5.14 on Friday.

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