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Yew Grove REIT sees strong rent collections despite the lockdown

In the first half of 2020, Ireland went into lock-down but Yew Grove's focus on areas outside of Dublin and its strong tenant covenants have enabled it to put in a steady performance

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Yew Grove REIT PLC (LON:YEW), the Irish commercial property company, had a steady first half despite the economy being rocked by the coronavirus lockdown.

The group's annualised rent roll had risen to €10.4mln by the end of June, 2020, up from €8.9mln at the beginning of the year, and rose further to €11.1mln by the end of July.

The real estate investment trust (REIT) said it had collected 97% of second-quarter rents by June 5, with 1.9% of the balance being deferred under a repayment plan and the remainder due from non-food retail outlets that had been closed for the period.

Third-quarter collections due on June 30 were 98% collected, with 1.3% deferred under a payment plan and 0.7% due from non-food retail units that re-opened in June.

Yew Tree's net asset value (NAV) per share fell 1.1% to 97.39 cents from 98.52 cents at the end of 2019, largely as a result of the acquisition of six buildings at Millennium Park, Naas (the county town of County Kildare).

The property portfolio was independently valued at €141.1mln at the end of June; at the end of 2019, the valuation stood at €115.8mln.

The group's net revenues for the six months to the end of June were €5.3mln, including €150,000 of lease surrender premium payments, down from €5.4mln in the same period of 2019. Excluding lease surrender premium payments, the group's revenues showed an increase of 51% on the first half of 2019.

“Despite the strains imposed on businesses by the crisis, the strength of our tenant covenants continues to be reflected in the robust performance of our rent roll and the stability of our portfolio valuation,” Jonathan Laredo, the chief executive officer of Yew Grove said in a statement.

“We have a programme of further asset management works underway and a pipeline of accretive investments identified,” Laredo revealed.

"Yew Grove REIT is the only REIT predominantly focussed on investing in the office and industrial sectors of the Irish real estate market outside of Dublin's traditional central business district. The Company's focus on the credit and business of all our tenants has been reflected in strong collections and stable portfolio value in a global crisis period. This validates Yew Grove REIT's differentiated strategy, targeting well tenanted commercial real estate and I look forward to continuing this in the second half of the year," Laredo said.

Quick facts: Yew Grove REIT PLC

Price: 0.845 EUR

LSE:YEW
Market: LSE
Market Cap: €94.28 m
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