ING’s listed property income said today it would continue to sell off property in order to pay back its debt.
Nicholas Thompson, chairman on the ING UK Property Income Trust, said: ‘With a number of disposals completed throughout 2007 and early in 2008, the investment manager has sought to enhance the income bias and at the same time reduce the number of non-core assets within the portfolio.
Proceeds were primarily used to reduce the overall level and cost of debt and it is expected that this will continue into 2008, with a view to repaying all non-securitised borrowings by the end of the year.’
The company currently had £82m in outstanding non-securitised at the end of 2007, due for repayment by December 2009. It has a portfolio valued at £633m, meaning that it would have to sell more than 10% of its portfolio into a market that is depressed in order to pay back this debt by the end of the year.
‘Whilst in current market conditions it is more difficult to achieve disposals, where appropriate these will continue where value can be achieved through the disposal process and when it is in line with the strategy of enhancing income and total return prospects,’ Thompson said.
ING revealed that the net asset value of the trust had fallen 11% in 2007, with a 5% rise in the first half pegged back by a 15% drop to 112p in the second half. ING said the portfolio outperformed the wider market, providing a total return of -0.8% compared to the Investment Property Databank all-property index return of -3.4%, and outperformed on an income return basis, its key performance indicator.