Liberty International is looking at ways of raising new equity and also cut its dividend to bolster its balance sheet.

The company is expected to wait until after its full year results today to finalise equity-raising plans, however, in spite of analyst worries that it could miss the opportunity to tap investor support. It is likely that the company will choose a placing of shares, rather than a larger rights issue, raising several hundred million pounds. This is in spite of the £2bn of large equity issues over the past few weeks by property rivals such as Land Securities and British Land.

Liberty does not have an immediate need for emergency funds, as about 90 per cent of its debt is non-recourse and asset specific, and it also hopes to raise additional equity through a cut in its dividend and further asset sales. It is also talking to lenders about relaxing covenants if necessary.

Financial Times