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Embassy REIT’s April rent collection at 95%

The drop in rent collection could be due to the impact on retail and food court rentals. (Photo: Mint)Premium
The drop in rent collection could be due to the impact on retail and food court rentals. (Photo: Mint)

  • The office developer halts all construction activity and hotel operations to comply with government directives during the lockdown
  • The slight drop in rent collection could be attributed to retail and food court rentals, which have been impacted with most companies implementing work from home for their employees

MUMBAI : With the coronavirus pandemic disrupting economic activity and cash flows for businesses, US private equity firm Blackstone-backed Embassy Office Parks REIT, India’s first listed real estate investment trust, on Tuesday reported that it has received commitments for 95% of rent due for April.

The slight drop in rent collection could be attributed to retail and food court rentals, which have been impacted with most companies implementing work-from-home policies.

The Bengaluru-based office developer has also stopped construction and hotel operations.

“Embassy REIT has received commitments for 95% rent in the month of April 2020. This is in line, if not above, the global rental collections in commercial real estate," Embassy REIT chief executive Michael Holland said, adding it has already collected approximately 90% rent as of date in May 2020.

“Given the current macro environment around the covid-19 pandemic, we consider this level of collections to be strong," he said.

“Embassy REIT has distributed 18,821 million in its first full year since listing. This is much more than any Nifty Realty (which consists of 10 listed Indian real estate shares) which has delivered INR 11, 909 million, as of 31 March 2020," added Holland.

Embassy REIT reported overall occupancy of 92.8% on its 26.2 million square feet (msf) operating office portfolio, with same-store occupancy at 94.5%, considering March 2019 as base year. Between January and March, it had leased 389,000sq. ft of new area and re-leased 1.1msf in 2019-20. It also delivered 1.4msf new office buildings on existing campuses during the fiscal.

In the quarter ended 31 March, the board of directors at Embassy Office Parks Management Services Pvt. Ltd, which manages the Embassy REIT, announced a distribution of 531.7 crore or 6.89 per unit to REIT investors. This takes the total distribution for fiscal 2020 to 1,882.1 crore or 24.39 per unit.

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