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Hammerson 'well positioned' for 2008

Developer Hammerson has 'made good progress' since the start of the year and is in a strong position to weather the current market uncertainties, the company said today.

In an interim management statement chairman John Nelson said the firm had made significant steps forward in letting and completing current developments, the additional contracted income from which would increase Hammerson’s annual rents by £36 million over the next few years.

He said: "We have made good progress in all areas of our business this year. We have a retail and office portfolio of the highest quality, both in the UK and France.

"It provides the potential for further good income growth over the next three years, both from the existing investment assets and the current development projects as they are completed and let."

He noted that, despite the worsening credit climate, the company had a strong balance sheet and were well-financed.

Mr Nelson said: "Hammerson is therefore in a good position to weather the current market uncertainties and take advantage of opportunities that may arise."

The group has six major developments currently underway at an estimated total cost of £955 million, five of the schemes are scheduled for completion later this year.

He said: "Following completion and letting, these projects are projected to generate income of about £73 million, of which £36 million has now been contracted or is in solicitors’ hands.

"This will provide a further boost to income, particularly in 2009 and 2010."