Steven Knowles, St. Modwen’s North West Regional Director, added: “The North West region has experienced growth during the first half of the year. We have added a number of strategic acquisitions to our future development portfolio, increased net rental income and sold two assets for which we have recycled the income received back into the business.
“We have continued to add value to our existing portfolio of income producing assets with the recent acquisition of Crosby Town Centre, along with Wharf Industrial Estate and Chamberhall Business Park, both of which are in Bury. We have also entered a wider agreement with Knowsley Metropolitan Council on the development of a further 60 acres to complement the purchase of Kirkby Town Centre which was completed at the end of 2015.
“The sale of two major distribution centres totalling more than 129,000 sq ft to international parcel delivery firm DPD in Stoke-on-Trent and Stonebridge Business Park in Liverpool in December brought a share of the £25 million investment to the North West. At the start of the New Year we completed the sale of Heron Business Park in Widnes for £3.5 million. Despite the disposal of these assets we have continued to grow our income in the region.
“In September we will be starting the development of 80,000 sq ft of retail space at Great Homer Street in Liverpool.
“We have had a positive response to our asset management initiatives which have already secured more than 65 new leases from the retained portfolio of commercial estates we own and manage across the region. These include a number of new leases at Kirkby Town Centre, where we also have interest from a leading supermarket, and Wythenshawe Town Centre where our premises are close to being fully let. Our rent roll has risen to in excess of £14 million from more than 700 occupiers.
“This strong base provides us the resource with which to strengthen our portfolio in the region and we will continue to seek new opportunities where we can add value throughout the second half of the year and beyond.”