Segro's Real Estate Sale; Analysis
VITAL STATISTICS Disposal of US portfolio for [pounds sterling]1.45bn One-year share performance: +19.5pc PROPERTY developerSegro, formerly Slough Estates, has sold its US life sciences real-estate business to Health Care Property Investors for [pounds sterling]1.45bn.
The headline number looks impressive, but net proceeds shrink to [pounds sterling]574m after deducting tax, debt and related costs.
The good news for shareholders is that they will get [pounds sterling]250m of this handed back to them via a special dividend (about 53p a share) by the end of the year.
The rest will be used to cut group debt to [pounds sterling]1.3bn.
The move takes Segro out of the US, but leaves it with aclearer focus on the UK and European markets.
Chief executive Ian Coull said he would be looking for acquisitions in markets like France, Germany and Poland over the next few years.
France and Germany are beginning to recover after a slower period, while Segro's real Analysis
Poland's commercial property sector has been buoyed by large amounts of investment since it joined the European Union in 2004.
VERDICT: Hold until future strategy is better developed. …