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UK’s Land Securities plans 3-way split

(LONDON) Land Securities, Britain’s largest real estate firm, is to consult shareholders on plans to demerge its retail, London office and property outsourcing businesses into three separate quoted companies, it announced yesterday.

The company said that the plan – which would be executed only in favourable market conditions – was in shareholders’ best interests, enabling each division to pursue its own strategy and allocate capital without competing demands from a different property segment.

‘Our board … recognised the need to test our current business structure,’ said chief executive officer Francis Salway.

‘We have concluded that the development of these businesses … are best served by demerger into three separate, specialised businesses, each of which will be of a scale to be at the forefront of their sectors,’ he said.

The announcement was made as Land Securities posted results for the six months to end-September. It reported a 2.5 per cent increase in the adjusted diluted net asset value to 2,236 pence and a 0.9 per cent increase in the value of its investment portfolio to £15billion pounds (S$44.8 billion).

In a separate statement, Land Securities said that it had formed a joint venture with British supermarket J Sainsbury to maximise the property potential of three Sainsbury’s branches with a total value of £113.4 million.


Source: Reuters (Business Times 15 Nov 07)

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