Precinct Properties made a $189.9 million net after-tax net profit, down on last year's $254.9m, due mainly to less spectacular rises in the value of its properties.

Underlying profit, adjusted for non-cash items, was up 3.7 per cent to $79.4m, or 6.37 cents per share for the year to June 30, 2019.

The company declared a fourth quarter dividend of 1.5c a share, taking the total dividend to 6c a share. Precinct announced it is changing its dividend policy to pay out 100 per cent of adjusted funds from operations with retained earnings to be used to fund capital expenditure.

The board expects full year earnings for the 2020 financial year of to be "at least" 6.8 cents per share, before performance fees, and expects to pay a total dividend of 6.30 cps, an increase of 5 per cent.

Advertisement
An Instagram view was taken in May. Photo / Warren and Mahoney
An Instagram view was taken in May. Photo / Warren and Mahoney

Expenses rose, pushing down operating income before tax but the bigger factor was the unrealised net gain on the value of its properties, which only increased by $161.7m this year, compared to the much larger $208.7m last year.

Gross rental revenue was $135.8m, up 3.9 per cent, and net property income was $97.5m, up on the previous $95.3m.

Precinct said its portfolio was valued at $2.8b, up on last year's $2.5b.

Leasing at its $1b 39-level Commercial Bay has risen to 95 per cent for the shops and pre-leasing for the offices is now at 82 per cent, according to chief executive Scott Pritchard.

No date change was announced for the offices or shops, due to open in April and March next year.

Precinct chief executive Scott Pritchard on L36 last month. Photo / Michael Craig
Precinct chief executive Scott Pritchard on L36 last month. Photo / Michael Craig

But the business did cite losses from Fletcher Construction's late delivery: "Precinct remains confident the provisions of the construction contract appropriately protect Precinct from losses due to contractor delay and/or breach of contractor obligations," it said.

READ MORE:
$1b Commercial Bay revalued; Precinct portfolio now stands at $2.8b
Chiefs gather for $1b Commercial Bay being 'topped off' today
$1b Commercial Bay delayed even further: no shops, offices till next year

In mid-February, Precinct announced delays. Costs had risen and Fletcher Construction payments were being withheld. Yet the business pushed up half-year profit from $17.7m to $24.6m.

Advertisement

Commercial Bay project costs rose from $685m to $690m, Precinct said on February 19. Christmas/New Year holiday period delays had resulted in "around one month slippage in the construction programme" and $15.4m has been withheld from the builder for late delivery.

The tower's offices were originally scheduled to open last month but Precinct said in February they would not be finished until December.

Commercial Bay on Auckland's waterfront. Photo / Dean Purcell
Commercial Bay on Auckland's waterfront. Photo / Dean Purcell

Although H&M opened last year, the rest of the shops which were due to open last November won't now open till September this year, according to previous Precinct announcements.

On May 29, Precinct delivered a further update on Commercial Bay and further bad news.

"The previously disclosed targeted opening dates have now been revised to March 2020 for the retail centre and April 2020 for the new PwC Tower. The revised targeted opening dates are due to observed delays in construction progress by the main contractor, Fletcher Construction, across both the Tower and retail centre components."

Office leasing stood at 92 per cent then and retail at 80 pre cent. Pritchard said the business was "very disappointed" about further delays to the tower's opening.

Precinct shares dipped 5c or 0.27 per cent to $1.82 following the result announcement this morning.

PRECINCT PROPERTIES

• Announced a new Commercial Bay timetable in May
• March 2020: 120 shops are scheduled to open
• April 2020: high-rise offices are due to be finished
• Tower to be 39 levels high, with restaurants and bars
• 10,000 office workers to be in close proximity in area