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STOCKHOLM-Castellum, one of the major listed real estate companies in Sweden, has reported 18% first half growth in income from property management, but took a hefty depreciation charge and saw its loan-to-value ratio tick higher in June to 53% from 50% at end-2008.

Income from property management – net of changes in value and tax – amounted to SEK557 million (€51 million) – equating to SEK3.40 per share – and up from €43 million equivalent in 1H08. The 18% improvement above came from the effect of lower interest rates, but also higher rental incomes and investments. During the period Castellum made investments totalling €51.5 million, around one third of the volume invested in first half 2008. Rental income for the half rose 10.5% to €122 million. However, it took a charge of no less than €74 million in value on properties, about 45% higher than June 2008, taking total value to €2.63 billion, from €2.65 billion in December.

“Even if the recession has become more visible on the rental market, growth in income from property management is very strong and the net leasing so far is better than expected,” commented Castellum CEO Håkan Hellström. “I’m also pleased that Castellum has succeeded in signing a new long-term credit agreement of SEK1bn (€91 million), which can be seen as a sign of a more normal credit market.”

Castellum’s portfolio comprises office, retail, warehouse and industrial assets, and is owned and managed by six subsidiaries with strong local roots in five growth regions: Greater Gothenburg, the Öresund Region, Greater Stockholm, Mälardalen and Eastern Götaland.

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