Bettina Schragl

IMMOFINANZ at the Gewinn Trade Fair: A solid position with a comfortable liquidity buffer

“As always,we have a big crowd”, commented Gewinn publisher Georg Wailand, as he welcomed IMMOFINANZ CEO Oliver Schumy to an interview at the Gewinn Trade Fair.Schumy began by emphasising IMMOFINANZ’s solid position at the half-year: record-high occupancy of nearly 95%, improvement in all key operating indicators, financing costs substantially reduced and a comfortable liquidity buffer of more than EUR 700 million after the closing of the profitable sale of the CA Immo investment and the purchase of a block of shares in S IMMO.

Slightly more than EUR 200 million of these funds will presumably be invested in the current share buyback programme. IMMOFINANZ is also planning further retail park acquisitions to expand its highly successful STOP SHOP portfolio (returns between 7.5 and nearly 8%). IMMOFINANZ currently has retail parks at 72 locations in eight countries. The goal is to grow to 100 STOP SHOPs and further strengthen the company’s leading position in this segment.

In the office segment, IMMOFINANZ’s two landmark projects in the Düsseldorf Medienhafen are approaching completion: Tenants have already moved into trivago’s new global headquarters, the trivago Campus with roughly 26,000 sqm, and the official opening is scheduled for the end of October. And at the FLOAT (approx. 28,000 sqm of office space), the transfers to tenants have started. Next to the trivago Campus, IMMOFINANZ is constructing a further office building with nearly 21,000 sqm and 16 stories. It will be the first building under the myhive brand in Germany.

When asked about the roughly 29% investment in S IMMO, the CEO explained that IMMOFINANZ, as a shareholder, intends to support S IMMO’s successful course. The investment held by IMMOFINANZ in S IMMO – as well as the investment held by S IMMO in IMMOFINANZ – would create a very good starting position for various forms of cooperation between the two companies.

Schumy responded to questions on the dividend policy by pointing out the steady increase in the dividend in recent years. After 70 cents per share for the previous financial year, IMMOFINANZ is planning a distribution of 80 cents per share for the 2018 financial year.

Thursday evening was the setting for a roundtable discussion led by Gewinn editor-in-chief Robert Wiedersich on “Real estate shares: Where do the professionals invest“, which included IMMOFINANZ as well as S IMMO, CA Immo and UBM. Here, Schumy also referred to our projects in Germany and our further growth with the STOP SHOPs in CEE.