Asset Plus (ex-NPT) slashes debt, poised to invest

NZX-listed Asset Plus Ltd – the former NPT Ltd now managed by Augusta Capital Ltd – has reduced its total debt to $14.45 million after banking the return from its sale of the AA Centre in Auckland.

Asset Plus repaid $34 million of debt after the $47 million sale of the AA Centre to SkyCity Entertainment Group Ltd. Its total debt includes a $2.5 million deferred tax liability and $1.4 million of current liabilities.

From a debt:equity ratio of 48.3% at the 31 March balance date, and 55.8% a year earlier, the ratio pro forma at the end of July was 12.6%.

The company’s remaining 3 investment properties were valued at $123.3 million at 31 March – $58 million for the Eastgate shopping centre in Christchurch, $27.3 million for the Heinz-Wattie warehouse in Hastings and $38 million for the Roskill Centre in Auckland – and showed a passing rent yield of 6.93% & market cap rate of 7.49%.

Augusta managing director Mark Francis, presenting the manager’s report to the Asset Plus annual meeting last Friday, gave a 5-point investment mandate:

  • Target assets for their ability to contribute to a yield-plus growth orientation
  • Wide-ranging diversified, value-add strategy that is sector agnostic
  • Geographical capability to invest in major regions, with a focus north of Taupo
  • Seek assets capable of benchmark outperformance through active management & development, and
  • Poised to take advantage of inevitable changing economic conditions.

He said the overarching strategic objective was to:

  • Close the NTA (net tangible asset) gap by resolving existing asset issues and restoring faith in Asset Plus asset valuations through active management, and
  • Create sustainable shareholder growth through disciplined acquisition.

Attribution: Company release.

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