SINGAPORE (Jan 23): The manager of Mapletree Commercial Trust reported 3Q18/19 DPU rose by 1.3% to 2.33 cents, compared to 2.30 cents in 3Q17/18.

This brings DPU for 9M18/19 to 6.83 cents, 0.9% higher than 6.77 cents in FY17/18.

MCT’s current portfolio comprises five properties in Singapore – VivoCity, Mapletree Business City I (MBC I), PSA Building, Mapletree Anson and Bank of America Merril Lynch Harbourfront (MLHF).

Gross revenue for the quarter came in at $112.5 million, 2.6% higher than $109.7 million a year ago, largely driven by higher contribution from VivoCity.

Revenue for VivoCity was $2.4 million higher y-o-y,  driven mainly by higher rental income from new and renewed leases, achieved together with the completed asset enhancement initiatives (AEI), the effects of the step-up rents in existing leases and higher other revenue.

Meanwhile, revenue for MLHF was $3.0 million higher y-o-y, mainly due to full occupancy in 3Q18/19. Mapletree Anson saw revenue increase by $0.3 million, mainly due to higher occupancy in 3Q18/19 and effects of step-up rents in existing leases. Revenue for PSA Building saw a $0.1 million increase due mainly to effects of the step-up rents in existing leases.

Revenue for MBC I was however $0.3 million lower than the previous year, mainly due to a one-off compensation received from a pre-terminated lease in 3Q17/18, partially offset by higher rental income from new leases and the effects of the step-up rents in existing leases.

Property operating expenses rose 4.1% y-o-y to $24.7 million, bringing net property income for 3Q18/19 to $87.9 million, 2.2% higher than $86.0 million last year.

During the quarter, the trust recorded a gain of $2.86 million in net change in fair value of financial derivatives, compared to a loss of $2.39 million in the previous year.

However, the trust registered foreign exchange loss of $2.87 million during the quarter, compared to a gain of $1.78 million the same period a year ago.

On the outlook, the manager expects MCT’s portfolio to remain resilient given VivoCity’s strong positioning and consistent performance, as well as the manageable lease expiries in MCT’s office/business park properties.

Sharon Lim, CEO of the manager, says, “Year to date, we have embarked on a series of changes at VivoCity, and this includes some rigorous management of tenant mix particularly in 3Q18/19. As a result, there was a transitory impact on VivoCity’s tenant sales. These changes, however, will strengthen VivoCity’s appeal and long-term positioning. Momentum will pick up once the changes are completed.”

Units in MCT closed 1 cent lower at $1.72 on Wednesday.