22nd December 2017

Ediston Real Estate’s recent equity raise for its listed REIT raises £90 million for its Listed REIT (EPIC plc) and acquires £144 million of retail parks

Ediston Property Investment Company, the UK listed REIT, managed by Ediston Real Estate, has successfully closed its equity raise allowing it to complete the acquisition of four retail parks for £144 million.  The Company simultaneously concluded a credit facility from AVIVA Investors for £54.16 million at an ‘all-in’ fixed interest rate of 2.73% per annum.   The portfolio acquisition increases the REIT’s gross assets to £340 million.

The equity raise increases the NAV of the Company by over 60% in one deal and represents a significant positive step in the Company’s ambition to provide investors with an attractive level of income, together with the prospects of income and capital growth from a diversified portfolio of UK commercial properties.  It also gives the Company a larger platform from which to develop its asset management initiatives and provide shareholders with potentially more liquidity in the secondary market in a Company with a reduced cost base.

The company recently surprised markets by increasing its dividend by 4.5% (from 5.5 pence to 5.75 pence per share) paying out a 5.1% dividend yield from January 2018.

Danny O’Neill, Chief Executive of Ediston commented – We are delighted to have received such support from existing and new shareholders for this transaction which endorses the team’s track record of investing in and asset managing properties over the past 3 years since the launch of EPIC plc in October 2014.  The transaction was one which we were keen to secure in a sub-sector of the market where we have considerable experience in both investing and developing retail parks.   The acquisition brings the total amount of retail warehousing Ediston Real Estate manages for clients to over 1.8 million sq. ft.

And on other business streams over 2017 O’Neill commented that Ediston Real Estate (in addition to EPIC) had made significant progress on a number of fronts.  The company invested a total of £277 million into the UK market as well as selling £115 million of assets where business plans had been successfully implemented.  It also has a further £41 million of asset purchases in solicitor’s hands due to complete in January 2018.

Ediston recently acquired Pacific House in Glasgow (£10.8 million) for its Clydebuilt Fund, a joint venture with Strathclyde Pension Fund, with whom it also recently completed Port Glasgow Shopping Park with numerous new lettings including M&S, Boots, TK Maxx and Next on the 180,000 sq. ft., £45 million, project it commenced in 2016.

The company also expects to start work on its 122,000 sq. ft. Crown Street retail park alongside the development of 350 new homes in the New Gorbals Regeneration area in Q2 2018, a project with an end value of £86 million. This residential project will be Ediston’s second major residential development having completed the delivery and sale of 114 houses at The Fruitmarket at Chesser in Edinburgh with 34 sales grossing £10 million and 80 flats being leased to Places for People on a ‘mid-market’ rental basis.  The company is already committed to the delivery of 1150 homes and has plans to increase its exposure to housing delivery over the next 3 years and plans to announce its commitment to the sector in the first quarter of 2018.

For further information please contact:
Ediston Properties Limited   0131 225 5599
Danny O’Neill   and Andy McKinlay