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Hammerson to boost development with share placing

Shopping centre developer Hammerson has announced a share placing to advance its expansion and support its development pipeline.

The company said it intends to issue 71.3m new ordinary shares of 25 pence each, with the proceeds to help fund its developments.

It said around £120m would be used to part-fund its regeneration of its Brent Cross shopping centre and the surrounding area in north London, and the £1bn redevelopment of the Whitgift Centre in Croydon (pictured), in its joint venture with Westfield.

Hammerson will also contribute £30m to extensions at the Value Retail villages in Bicester and Kildare, as well as the new Value Retail Shanghai Village, in which the developer owns a stake.

CN Summit 2014

Find out more about Hammerson’s development pipeline from its chief investment officer Peter Cole at the Construction News Summit 2014 on 23 October.

Proceeds from the share placing will also finance the acquisition of the remaining 40 per cent stake in its Highcross shopping centre in Leicester for £180m.

At Highcross, Hammerson said work to upgrade the East Mall environment and the town centre entrance would improve its rental growth potential.

Hammerson will also invest £70m in VIA Outlets, a new outlet shopping joint venture with Value Retail, APG and Meyer Bergman. It will aim to acquire existing outlet centres with growth potential.

Hammerson chief executive David Atkins said: “This placing enables us to accelerate our focus on experience, convenience and luxury, the three key areas underpinning our successful retail locations.

“The new investment into VIA Outlets and Value Retail will build on our knowledge of this exciting sector and gives us access to opportunities in new markets alongside proven partners.

“Furthermore, our acquisition of the remaining 40 per cent in Highcross will allow us to capture the full future rental uplift from a number of asset management activities at this strongly performing centre.”

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