The value of the Canary Wharf Group office and retail portfolio soared 18% to £6.7bn last year

Annual results published this morning from Songbird Estates, the majority owner of Canary Wharf Group, showed that the valuation uplift was driven by leasing and forward sales on 1.4m sq ft (130,000 sq m) of space and construction starting on four buildings.

It led to a 48% increase in AIM-listed Songbird’s net asset value to 274p a share. Pretax profits jumped from £3.6m to £77.2m.

During the year Canary Wharf Group let 690,000 sq ft (64,100 sq m), of which the biggest amount was to Bear Stearns. It also pre-sold 700,000 sq ft (65,030 sq m), notably to KPMG.

Construction began on four buildings, totalling 1.3m sq ft (120,770 sq m) and planning consent was obtained for 2.4m sq ft (222,965 sq m) of office and retail space at North Quay, which gives Canary Wharf Group the capacity to develop a further 5.2m sq ft (483,090 sq m).

Away from the Canary Wharf estate, Canary Wharf Group is acting as construction manager for two of Ballymore's developments in Docklands: at Millharbour, a 40-floor and a 50-floor residential development comprising 700,000 sq ft (65,030 sq m) and at Crossharbour, a 1.5m sq ft (139,350 sq m) development containing eight buildings ranging from seven to 43 storeys.

At Wood Wharf, where Canary Wharf Group is a 25% partner, progress is being made on the masterplan for the development of around 6.5m sq ft (603,865 sq m) of commercial and residential use.