Aldar Properties on Wednesday said its fourth-quarter earnings surged 79 per cent to Dh427 million on completion of projects, higher revenues and income from hospitality and educational ventures.
The property developer, which built Abu Dhabi's Formula One race track, said its full-year net profit for 2013 soared 67 per cent to Dh2.25 billion due to new deliveries and higher sales, as a consequence of the mega merger with Sorouh Real Estate.
The Abu Dhabi-based developer registered higher recurring revenues from the hospitality and investment property portfolio. Recurring revenue grew 27 per cent to Dh1.83 billion over 2013 largely due to the combination of Aldar and Sorouh investment properties on merger.
Revenues from the hospitality portfolio, which includes seven hotels on Abu Dhabi'sYas Island and now the Tilal Liwa Hotel in the Western region of the emirate, increased 21 per cent to Dh504 million on higher occupancy to 77 per cent.
"We have strengthened our financial position, enhanced our capital structure and made progress balancing our business between development and recurring revenues," Abubaker Seddiq Al Khoori, chairman of Aldar Properties, said in a statement to Khaleej Times on Wednesday.
During the fourth quarter, Aldar raised $750 million via a landmark five-year sukuk. The transaction was priced very competitively at a fixed profit rate of 4.348 per cent and proceeds were used to repay debt and extend the company's debt maturity profile.
Aldar Properties, one of the biggest property developer in the region, recorded a one-off gain on the acquisition of the net assets of Sorouh Real Estate following the merger between the two companies. It has been focusing on reducing the cost of borrowing, extending its maturity profile and lowering its leverage levels post the completion of the merger with Sorouh.
The property developer continued to maintain a strong cash position with Dh8.3 billion of cash and available liquidity at the end of the year. Its total assets reached Dh43.7 billion and gearing (net debt to equity) was 58 per cent compared to 144 per cent a year earlier.
Al Khoori said he had "moved quickly to build a platform for sustainable growth having completed our merger integration earlier than planned." "We are seeing strong growth in the Abu Dhabi economy and Aldar will continue to play an integral role building communities and attractions that meet the lifestyle demands of both residents and visitors alike," he said.
He said Aldar is currently working on new development projects from "our extensive land bank that will lead us into a new phase of profit growth that will drive shareholder value."
Residential leasing activity picked up strongly at the end of 2013 at newly completed projects, including the Gate Towers and Al Rayyana, while the company's residential portfolio comprising leased assets at Sas Al Nakhl, Khalidiya Village, Al Raha Beach, Sun and Sky and Al Murjan Tower were almost fully leased.