Trading improves as Attacq addresses debt

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Trading improves as Attacq addresses debt

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Published Date: 2021-05-04 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

Trading improves as Attacq addresses debt

The retail estate investment trust has repaid euro debt and is refinancing a syndicated loan which matures next year.

Attacq Limited says trading conditions at its shopping centres have improved following the easing of lockdown conditions.

In an update, the real estate investment trust said the first half of its financial year was significantly impacted by the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic which resulted in further national lockdown restrictions. However, it had seen a marked improvement in trading density growth at its retail centres since the beginning of March, with all its tenants able to trade with minimal restrictions.

Attacq's local portfolio includes shopping centres such as Mall of Africa in Gauteng and Garden Route Mall in the Western Cape, as well as office and mixed-used, light industrial and hotel properties. It is busy developing Waterfall City north of Johannesburg. In addition, it owns a stake in European property investor MAS Real Estate. It is busy exiting its retail investments in Africa outside SA.

Meanwhile, it said it had proactively commenced with refinancing its syndicated loan of R3.3-billion syndicated loan, which is secured by the portfolios of its subsidiaries, Attacq Retail Fund and Lynwood Bridge Office Park. R2.9-billion of the loan matures in 2022.

Attacq said it expected to repay the balance of the syndicated loan, amounting to about R300-million, with the proceeds from the sale of assets. Since the end of December it had also settled €35.8-million of its euro-denominated debt out of proceeds from the disposal of shares in MAS Real Estate, significantly de-risking its balance sheet.

In a separate announcement, Attacq said AIH International, which it owns with Hyprop Investments, had extended the long stop date for the sale of the Ikeja City Mall in Nigeria to the end of July due to a shortage of dollars in Nigeria. It said the date may be extended further by written agreement between the sellers and the purchases if the dollar liquidity shortage in that country hadn't improved by that time.

Its shares closed 1.4% up at R7.40 yesterday.





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