Unite increases its 2018 interim dividend by 30%

DividendMax Ltd.

Unite increases its 2018 interim dividend by 30%

Unite 2018 interim results

EPRA Earnings up 31% to £52.9m (30 June 2017: £40.4 million) and dividend up 30% to 9.5p (30 June 2017: 7.3p)

Increased dividend, up 30% to 9.5p, driven by growing earnings and higher pay out

Profit before tax up 70% to £142.5 million (30 June 2017: £83.9 million)

High-quality income, portfolio and University relationships support rental growth

Reservations for 2018/19 academic year at 91% (2017: 91%)

Supports rental growth outlook for 2018/19 of 3.0-3.5%

Nomination agreements with Universities represent 60% of accommodation (2017: 59%), with an average remaining life of six years (2017: six years) providing income and rental growth certainty on over half of revenue

Over 9,000 beds in secured pipeline across development, University partnerships and forward funds, driving future earnings growth

Acquisition of 678-bed forward funded development in Wembley for £102 million for delivery in 2020. The acquisition is expected to deliver a yield on cost of over 6% and be valued at a net initial yield of 4.5%

Two new off-campus University Partnership schemes in Oxford and London secured, delivering c.1,900 beds with target openings of 2019 and 2021 respectively

Development pipeline of 6,500 beds for delivery over the next three years (2017: 7,550 beds), generating 7.7% yield on cost

On track to open 3,075 beds across seven new buildings for the 2018/19 academic year. All schemes are on time and on budget with reservations in line with the broader portfolio

Growing number of opportunities in London being evaluated

High-quality portfolio aligned to the strongest Universities where intake continues to grow

52,000 operational beds for 2018/19 academic year, with a value of £5.0 billion; Unite share £2.7 billion (30 June 2017: 49,600 beds, valued at £4.6 billion; Unite share £2.3 billion)

85% of Unite's portfolio now located at high and mid-ranked Universities (30 June 2017: 82%), increasing to 90% on completion of our development and University partnership pipeline and planned acquisitions and disposals

Strong financial position

LTV of 27% (31 December 2017: 30%), cost of debt at 4.1% (31 December 2017: 4.1%)

Unite Group plc assigned an investment grade corporate rating of BBB from Standard & Poor's and Baa2 from Moody's

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