By Andrew Starke
Listed pub owner the ALE Property Group has reported a profit of $39.84 million for the six months to December, up from $10.25 million for the prior period.
Rising pub values contributed to the boost with the group’s 87 properties now valued at $735.6 million, up 3 percent from $713.9 million at June 30 2010.
In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, ALE Property Group managing director Andrew Wilkinson added that ALE was completely unaffected by all recent weather events around Australia.
The group also revealed that detailed discussions are proceeding according to plan to complete the final step of a refinancing of debt facilities maturing in May and September 2011.
“ALE is pleased to advise that its assets and earnings were completely unaffected by the various weather events that occurred during the first six weeks of 2011,” said the statement.
“Under the long term triple net leases, (tenant) ALH has responsibility to fully insure the properties as well the obligation to continue to pay rent while damage is rectified.”
The flooding that occurred in Brisbane in January saw two of ALE’s properties closed for a short time.
Both the Breakfast Creek Hotel at Albion and Racehorse Hotel at Booval (near Ipswich) reopened within eight days.
Over the six months to December 31 2010, ALE reduced its net debt to $390 million, equating to a net gearing ratio of 51.8 percent.
“Based on the quality and performance of ALE’s existing portfolio of properties, ALE does not expect to make any significant property divestments in the short to medium term,” said the company.
“Acquisitions will continue to be evaluated on the basis of the criteria previously announced.
“ALE will continue to focus on maintaining an appropriate overall financial position with respect to liquidity, financial risk management and capital management.”