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Crombie REIT reports solid third quarter 2012 results

STELLARTON, NS, Nov. 13, 2012 /CNW/ - Crombie Real Estate Investment Trust ("Crombie") (TSX: CRR.UN) is pleased to report its results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2012.

2012 Highlights

  • Funds from operations ("FFO") for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 was $0.25 per unit (payout ratio 90.7%) compared to $0.27 per unit (payout ratio 84.2%) for the same period in 2011. Excluding the impact of the approximately $3.0 million expense relating to the Refinanced Mortgages (see Finance Costs - Operations below), FFO for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 would have been $0.28 (payout ratio 79.5%).
  • FFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was $0.78 per unit (payout ratio 87.2%) compared to $0.82 per unit (payout ratio 81.7%) for the same period in 2011. Excluding the approximately $3.0 million Refinanced Mortgages impact, FFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 would have been $0.81 (payout ratio 83.3%).
  • Adjusted funds from operations ("AFFO") for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 was $0.21 per unit (payout ratio 106.1%) compared to $0.22 per unit (payout ratio 101.9%) for the same period in 2011. Excluding the impact of the approximately $3.0 million expense relating to the Refinanced Mortgages, AFFO for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 would have been $0.24 (payout ratio 94.3%).
  • AFFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was $0.65 per unit (payout ratio 103.9%) compared to $0.65 per unit (payout ratio 102.7%) for the same period in 2011. Excluding the approximately $3.0 million Refinanced Mortgages impact, AFFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 would have been $0.68 (payout ratio 99.6%).
  • Crombie completed the acquisition of two properties in the quarter ended September 30, 2012 totalling $29.6 million; 30 retail properties totalling $340.8 million have been acquired year to date which increases total assets in excess of $2.0 billion.
  • Property revenue for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 of $64.5 million; an increase of $9.7 million or 17.7% over the $54.8 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2011.
  • Same-asset cash net operating income ("NOI") for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 of $33.3 million; an increase of $1.5 million or 4.7%, compared to $31.8 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2011 and for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, same-asset cash NOI of $99.2 million; an increase of $2.5 million or 2.5% over the same period in 2011.
  • Occupancy on a committed basis was 93.5% at September 30, 2012 compared with 93.5% at June 30, 2012, and 94.7% at December 31, 2011.  Actual occupied space at September 30, 2012 was 92.2% compared with 91.8% at June 30, 2012, and 93.3% at December 31, 2011.
  • Crombie completed leasing activity on 864,000 square feet of GLA during the nine months ended September 30, 2012, which represents approximately 83.8% of its 2012 expiring lease square footage.
  • Crombie's 2012 leasing activity included lease renewals during the first nine months on 371,000 square feet at an average rate of $14.27 per square foot; an increase of 8.3% over the expiring lease rate. Crombie's new leasing activity during the first nine months was completed at an average rate of $13.24 per square foot.

Commenting on the third quarter results, Donald E. Clow, FCA, President and Chief Executive Officer stated: "The refinancing of a portfolio of mortgages on 23 properties in September is a tremendous win for Crombie and its stakeholders. While expenses of $3.0 million were realized in the quarter, the payback on this transaction is short and significant. At current interest rates, the interest savings in less than one year should offset the costs incurred. The immediate remortgaging of these properties in the coming few quarters should provide additional funds to further our continued development, redevelopment and property acquisitions. Our strong year to date acquisitions growth is aligned with our strategy to increase our pace of high quality growth and national geographic diversification while maintaining ample liquidity and financial flexibility in these uncertain global economic times. We continue to focus on building a national portfolio of primarily grocery and drug anchored retail centres supported  by a strong national real estate platform."

The table below presents a summary of financial performance for the quarter and nine months ended September 30, 2012 compared to the same period in fiscal 2011.

 
(In millions of CAD dollars, except per unit amounts) Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Property revenue $64.459 $54.781 $187.552 $167.456
Property operating expenses 21.731 19.611 67.368 61.674
Property NOI 42.728 35.170 120.184 105.782
NOI margin percentage 66.3% 64.2% 64.1% 63.2%
Other items:        
  Lease terminations 0.273 -- 0.386 0.163
  Depreciation and amortization (12.200) (7.718) (32.077) (23.085)
  General and administrative expenses (3.105) (2.487) (9.213) (7.848)
Operating income before finance costs and income taxes 27.696 24.965 79.280 75.012
Finance costs - operations (20.285) (16.075) (52.770) (47.170)
Operating income before income taxes 7.411 8.890 26.510 27.842
Taxes - deferred 0.500 0.200 1.400 (0.300)
Operating income attributable to Unitholders 7.911 9.090 27.910 27.542
Finance costs - distributions to Unitholders (19.343) (15.132) (55.270) (44.753)
Decrease in net assets attributable to Unitholders $(11.432) $(6.042) $(27.360) $(17.211)
         
Operating income attributable to Unitholders per Unit,
Basic and Diluted
$0.09 $0.13 $0.34 $0.41
 
 
Property NOI - Cash Basis
(In millions of CAD dollars) Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Property NOI $42.728 $35.170 $120.184 $105.782
Non-cash tenant incentive amortization 1.727 1.369 4.799 3.836
Non-cash straight-line rent (1.249) (0.800) (3.564) (2.615)
Property cash NOI 43.206 35.739 121.419 107.003
Acquisition, disposition and redevelopment property cash NOI 9.850 3.895 22.179 10.216
Same-asset property cash NOI $33.356 $31.844 $99.240 $96.787

Property NOI, on a cash basis, excludes straight-line rent recognition and tenant incentive amortization amounts. The 4.7% and 2.5% increases in same-asset cash NOI for the quarter ended and nine months ended September 30, 2012 respectively are primarily the result of increased average rent per square foot from leasing activity during the past 12 months, completed land use intensification development projects and improved recovery rates.

Crombie believes that cash NOI is a better measure of AFFO sustainability and same-asset property performance.

Same-Asset Property NOI        
 
(In millions of CAD dollars)
Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Same-asset property revenue $50.355 $48.468 $152.704 $149.229
Same-asset property operating expenses 17.483 16.969 54.588 53.128
Same-asset property NOI $32.872 $31.499 $98.116 $96.101
Same-asset NOI margin % 65.3% 65.0% 64.3% 64.4%

Same-asset property NOI for the quarter grew 4.4% over Q3 of 2011.  Same-asset property revenue of $50.4 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 increased by 3.9% compared to the same quarter in 2011.  Same-asset property revenue of $152.7 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was 2.3% higher than the nine months ended September 30, 2011 due to increased base rent driven by lease renewal activity, completed land use intensification development projects at several properties and recoveries as a result of higher recoverable property expenses.

Same-asset property operating expenses of $17.5 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 were 3.0% higher than the quarter ended September 30, 2011 due primarily to higher recoverable property expenses. Same-asset property expenses of $54.6 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 increased by 2.7% from the nine months ended September 30, 2011 due primarily to higher recoverable property expenses.

Acquisition, Disposition and Redevelopment Property NOI
(In millions of CAD dollars) Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Three months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Nine months
ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Property revenue $14.104 $6.313 $34.848 $18.227
Property operating expenses 4.248 2.642 12.780 8.546
Property NOI $9.856 $3.671 $22.068 $9.681
NOI margin % 69.9% 58.1% 63.3% 53.1%

For the quarter ended and nine months ended September 30, 2012, the acquisition, disposition and redevelopment property results have significantly increased over the same periods in 2011.  The growth is impacted by the significant acquisition activity during 2011 and 2012 as well as the increased focus on property redevelopment over that same period.

General and Administrative Expenses

General and administrative expenses for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 increased by 0.3% from 4.5% to 4.8% as a percentage of property revenue, when compared to the same period in 2011.  Salaries and benefits increased due to the hiring of additional staff related to continued growth and higher incentive payments.  Other increases are primarily due to higher travel costs, training and development and increased public company costs.

General and administrative expenses as a percentage of property revenue increased by 0.2% from 4.7% to 4.9% as a percentage of revenue for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 when compared to the same period in 2011.  Salaries and benefits increased due to the hiring of additional staff related to continued growth and higher incentive payments.  Other increases are primarily due to higher travel costs, training and development, increased public company costs and costs associated with due diligence on potential property acquisitions.

Finance Costs - Operations
 
(In millions of CAD dollars)
Three months ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Three months ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Nine months ended
Sep. 30, 2012
Nine months ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Same-asset finance costs(1) $12.324 $12.723 $35.913 $38.251
Acquisition, disposition and redevelopment finance costs 3.752 1.324 8.994 3.303
Amortization of effective swaps and deferred financing charges(1) 4.209 2.028 7.863 5.616
Finance costs - operations $20.285 $16.075 $52.770 $47.170

(1)  In September 2012, Crombie assigned a portfolio of mortgages on 23 investment properties (the "Refinanced Mortgages") to a new lender. Concurrent with the assignment of the mortgages to the new lender, Crombie renegotiated the terms of the debt, refinancing them with a 30 month floating rate term credit facility. Included in finance costs for the quarter are expenses of approximately $3.0 million associated with this transaction (approximately $1.5 million in cash costs related to legal fees, term loan set up fees and a repayment fee paid to the mortgage lender are included in same-asset finance costs and approximately $1.5 million representing the unamortized balance of deferred financing and other costs previously paid in respect of the 2008 mortgage financing are included in Amortization of effective swaps and deferred financing charges). The mortgages, with a weighted average interest rate of 5.91% and terms to maturity from 2013 to 2017, totalled $92.4 million, while the floating rate term credit facility of $92.7 million had an interest rate of 3.07% at September 30, 2012. The floating rate is based on Bankers' Acceptance rates plus a spread or Prime Rates plus a spread.

Excluding the additional costs associated with the Refinanced Mortgages, same-asset finance costs for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 would have decreased by approximately $3.8 million compared to the nine months ended September 30, 2011 and same-asset finance costs for the three months ended September 30, 2012 would have decreased by approximately $1.9 million compared to the three months ended September 30, 2011.  The savings are primarily due to greater utilization of lower cost floating rate debt, mortgage refinancings and interest savings from conversions of Convertible Debentures.  Growth in acquisition, disposition and redevelopment finance costs is consistent with Crombie's significant acquisition activity in 2012 and 2011.

FFO and AFFO

Crombie's FFO and AFFO had the following results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2012 and 2011:

         
  Three months ended
Sep. 30,
Variance
(In millions of CAD dollars, except per unit amounts) 2012 2011 $ %
FFO $21.338  $17.977    $3.361 18.7%
FFO Per Unit - Basic $0.25 $0.27 $(0.02)      (7.4)%
FFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.24 $0.26 $(0.02)      (7.7)%
FFO Payout ratio 90.7% 84.2%   (6.5)%
Excluding the impact of $3.0 million of costs on Refinanced Mortgages:(1)
 

 

 

 

FFO Per Unit - Basic $0.28 $0.27 $0.01 3.7%

FFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.27 $0.26 $0.01 3.8%

FFO Payout ratio 79.5% 84.2%   4.7%
         
AFFO $18.237 $14.851 $3.386 22.8%
AFFO Per Unit - Basic $0.21 $0.22 $(0.01) (4.5)%
AFFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.21 $0.22 $(0.01) (4.5)%
AFFO Payout ratio 106.1% 101.9%   (4.2)%
Excluding the impact of $3.0 million of costs on Refinanced Mortgages:(1)        
  AFFO Per Unit - Basic $0.24 $0.22 $0.02 9.1%
  AFFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.23 $0.22 $0.01 4.5%
  AFFO Payout ratio 94.3% 101.9%   7.6%
(1) During the third quarter of 2012, Crombie refinanced $92.4 million of mortgages with a floating rate term credit facility.  Refinancing expenses of approximately $3.0 million were incurred.

The increase in FFO for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 was primarily due to the significant acquisition activity during 2011 and 2012.

AFFO for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 was $18.2 million, an increase of $3.4 million or 22.8% over the same period in 2011, due primarily to the improved FFO results as previously discussed.

     
  Nine months ended
Sep. 30,
Variance
(In millions of CAD dollars, except per unit amounts) 2012 2011    $ %
FFO $63.386  $54.763   $8.623 15.7%
FFO Per Unit - Basic $0.78 $0.82 $(0.04)      (4.9)%
FFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.76 $0.78 $(0.02)     (2.6)%
FFO Payout ratio 87.2% 81.7%   (5.5)%
Excluding the impact of $3.0 million of costs on Refinanced Mortgages:(1)        
  FFO Per Unit - Basic $0.81 $0.82 $(0.01) (1.2)%
  FFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.79 $0.78 $0.01 1.3%
  FFO Payout ratio 83.3% 81.7%   (1.6)%
         
AFFO $53.198 $43.566 $9.632 22.1%
AFFO Per Unit - Basic $0.65 $0.65 -- --
AFFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.64 $0.64 -- --
AFFO Payout ratio 103.9% 102.7%   (1.2)%
Excluding the impact of $3.0 million of costs on Refinanced Mortgages:(1)        
  AFFO Per Unit - Basic $0.68 $0.65 $0.03 4.6%
  AFFO Per Unit - Diluted $0.67 $0.64 $0.03 4.7%
  AFFO Payout ratio 99.6% 102.7%   3.1%
(1) During the third quarter of 2012, Crombie refinanced $92.4 million of mortgages with a floating rate term credit facility.  Refinancing expenses of approximately $3.0 million were incurred.

The increase in FFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was due primarily to significant acquisition activity which resulted in improved NOI results offset in part by increased operations finance costs related to the acquisitions.

AFFO for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was $53.2 million, an increase of $9.6 million or 22.1% over the same period in 2011, due primarily to the improved FFO results and the unfavourable swap agreement settlement of $1.7 million in the nine months ended September 30, 2011.

Liquidity and Financings

Crombie's objectives when managing its capital structure are to optimize weighted average cost of capital; maintain financial flexibility through access to long-term debt and equity markets; and maintain ample liquidity. In pursuit of these objectives, Crombie utilizes staggered debt maturities, optimizes its ongoing exposure to floating rate debt, pursues a range of fixed rate secured and unsecured debt and maintains sustainable payout ratios. Crombie has an authorized floating rate revolving credit facility of up to $200 million, subject to available borrowing base of which $62.6 million was drawn as at September 30, 2012, and an additional $11.4 million encumbered by outstanding letters of credit, resulting in significant available liquidity.

Debt to gross book value is 51.6% (including convertible debentures) at September 30, 2012 compared to 52.4% at June 30, 2012, 52.5% at December 31, 2011 and 54.8% at September 30, 2011. This leverage ratio is below the maximum 60%, or 65% including convertible debentures, permitted pursuant to Crombie's Declaration of Trust. On a long-term basis, Crombie intends to maintain overall indebtedness, including convertible debentures, in the range of 50% to 60% of gross book value, depending upon Crombie's future acquisitions and financing opportunities.

Crombie's interest and debt service coverage for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 were 2.58 times EBITDA and 1.75 times EBITDA respectively.  This compares to 2.45 times EBITDA and 1.73 times EBITDA respectively for the nine months ended September 30, 2011.

Definition of Non-IFRS Measures

Certain financial measures included in this news release do not have standardized meaning under IFRS and therefore may not be comparable to similarly titled measures used by other publicly traded entities.  Crombie includes these measures because it believes certain investors use these measures as a means of assessing Crombie's financial performance.

  • Property NOI is property revenue less property expenses.
  • Property Cash NOI is Property NOI adjusted to remove non-cash straight-line rent and tenant incentive amortization.
  • Debt is defined as bank loans plus commercial property debt and convertible debentures.
  • Gross book value means, at any time, the book value of the assets of Crombie and its consolidated subsidiaries plus deferred financing charges, accumulated depreciation and amortization in respect of Crombie's properties (and related intangible assets) and cost of any below-market component of properties less (i) the amount of any receivable reflecting interest rate subsidies on any debt assumed by Crombie and (ii) the amount of deferred income tax liability arising out of the fair value adjustment in respect of the indirect acquisitions of certain properties.
  • EBITDA is calculated as property revenue, adjusted to remove the impact of amortization of tenant incentives, less property expenses and general and administrative expenses.
  • FFO is calculated as Increase (decrease) in net assets attributable to Unitholders (computed in accordance with IFRS), excluding gains (or losses) from sales of depreciable real estate and extraordinary items, plus depreciation and amortization expense, deferred income taxes, finance costs - distributions to Unitholders and after adjustments for equity accounted entities and non-controlling interests.
  • AFFO is defined as FFO adjusted for non-cash amounts affecting revenue, amortization of effective swap agreements, less maintenance capital expenditures, maintenance tenant incentives and deferred leasing costs, and the settlement of effective interest rate swap agreements.

Interim Financial Reporting

While the financial figures included in this preliminary interim earnings announcement have been computed in accordance with IFRS applicable to interim periods, this announcement does not contain sufficient information to constitute an interim financial report as that term is defined in IFRS.  The Trustees expect to publish an interim financial report that complies with International Accounting Standard 34, Interim Financial Reporting, on November 13, 2012.

About Crombie

Crombie is an open-ended real estate investment trust established under, and governed by, the laws of the Province of Ontario.  The trust invests in income-producing retail, office and mixed-use properties in Canada, with a future growth strategy focused primarily on the acquisition of grocery-anchored and drug store-anchored retail properties. Crombie currently owns a portfolio of 170 investment properties in nine provinces, comprising approximately 14.0 million square feet of rentable space.

This news release contains forward-looking statements that reflect the current expectations of management of Crombie about Crombie's future results, performance, achievements, prospects and opportunities. Wherever possible, words such as "may", "will", "estimate", "anticipate", "believe", "expect", "intend" and similar expressions have been used to identify these forward-looking statements. These statements reflect current beliefs and are based on information currently available to management of Crombie. Forward-looking statements necessarily involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. A number of factors, including those discussed in the 2011 annual Management Discussion and Analysis under "Risk Management", could cause actual results, performance, achievements, prospects or opportunities to differ materially from the results discussed or implied in the forward-looking statements. These factors should be considered carefully and a reader should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements. There can be no assurance that the expectations of management of Crombie will prove to be correct.

In particular, certain statements in this document discuss Crombie's anticipated outlook of future events, including the the realization of any benefits from refinancing the portfolio of mortgages, future development and acquisition of properties and other pending growth opportunities and expected pace of growth, all of which could be impacted by financing market conditions, the demand for properties and the effect that demand has on acquisition capitalization rates and changes in interest rates. Readers are cautioned that such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from these statements. Crombie can give no assurance that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements.

Crombie's consolidated financial statements and management's discussion and analysis for the period ended September 30, 2012 can be found on Crombie's web site at www.crombiereit.com or on the SEDAR web site for Canadian regulatory filings at www.sedar.com.

Conference Call Invitation

Crombie will provide additional details concerning its third quarter ended September 30, 2012 results on a conference call to be held Tuesday, November 13, 2012, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern time. To join this conference call you may dial (647) 427-7450 or (888) 231-8191. You may also listen to a live audio web cast of the conference call by visiting Crombie's website located at www.crombiereit.com. Replay will be available until midnight November 27, 2012, by dialling (416) 849-0833 or (855) 859-2056 and entering pass code 49536472, or on the Crombie website for 90 days after the meeting.

 

 

 

SOURCE CROMBIE REIT

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