Property investment firm repays debt from £17.6m asset sale


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Midlands-focused property investors (REIs) used their disposals to pay off £11.9m of debt.

Average cost of debt is 3.5% with 90% debt fixed, with cash in bank at year end of £9.8m.

Demand from private investors fueled the sale of £17.55m of assets in 2021 for REI, which has completed 15 disposals and has a further £2.3m outstanding in the legal area.

Despite operational challenges, the company also reported near-normal rental collection levels in 2021 of 97.81%. Occupancy levels are expected to increase to 86.73% going forward as leases and pipeline transfers materialize.

CEO Paul Bassi said: “Following a hiatus in office occupier decisions due to government advice on ‘working from home’ and uncertainty surrounding the Omicron variant, there is now renewed interest. for office space, particularly our out-of-town stock and we have a healthy pipeline of new rentals in our empty space.

“We expect a sharp increase in market activity over the coming months as our region is showcased on the world stage in 2022 when hosting the highly anticipated Commonwealth Games.”

New tenants in REI’s portfolio include the former Premier Inn in West Bromwich, Vine Hotels having signed a 15-year lease over six floors, transforming the hotel into a Best Western.

Other additions include JD Sports Gyms, YMCA, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Comex 2000 and Bennetts Motorcycling Services.

Bassi added: “Demand for our convenience and convenience assets remains very strong. We are also seeing strong demand for roadside/fast food and drive-thru locations, and in response we have identified suitable unoccupied sites/redundant land and are negotiating competitive terms for strong commitments in this area. space.

REI has paid dividends of 2.25p per share for 2021, with a final dividend to be announced in March, making a minimum annual payment of 3p.

The company also announced that it will release its final results for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021 on March 22, 2022.