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ZURICH-Zurich-based listed real estate group PSP Swiss Property boosted net income, excluding portfolio value changes, by 9.7% to CHF103 million (€68 million) for the first nine months of 2009. Also it is reporting an 11.3% rise in earnings per share to CHF2.47, and net asset value per share up 2.4% at CHF63.33 (€42). The group said the figures confirm its outlook for the full year made in August, when it forecast record EBITDA, excluding investments.

PSP expects the portfolio vacancy rate at year-end of 8% down from 9% at the half year. At the end of September, the real estate portfolio included 182 office and commercial properties in prime locations as well as seven development sites with a carrying value of CHF5.2 billion (€3.4 billion). In the first nine months, several acquisition opportunities were evaluated but no purchases were made.

Rental income in the first three quarters grew by 4.1% as a result of reduction of vacancies in the previous year, higher rents and two special effects. Operating expenses fell by 2.3%, mainly due to lower real estate operating expenses and lower administrative costs. Consequently, the EBITDA margin improved to 80.6%. With a loan-to-value of 38.6%, down from 40.5% at year-end 2008, the capital structure remains very solid, the group said. Currently, unused credit lines total CHF540 million and no credit lines are due to be refinanced this year or next. During the first nine months of 2009, the average interest rate was 2.52% and at the end of September, the average fixed-interest period was three years.

Allan Saunderson is a managing editor of Property Finance Europe and a contributor to GlobeSt.com.

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