Assura boasts £522m pipeline in full year results
The Warrington-based healthcare developer has reported strong results, including a pre-tax profit growth increase of 44%, for the financial year ending 31 March.
Assura said it achieved £155.8m in pre-tax profit and a passing rent roll of £135.7m – up 12% from last year.
The company has a £522m development pipeline, including £166m projects on site.
While Assura is busy throughout the UK, Assura chief executive Jonathan Murphy said the North West continues to be an area of interest.
“It’s our home patch and by definition is somewhere we’re always focused on,” Murphy said, adding that the brand has a strong portfolio in the region. The North West is also a “base for some of our new thinking” as the brand expands its portfolio to include sites that address mental health.
Murphy highlighted Assura’s plans for a 21,000 sq ft medical centre at the grade two-listed Griffin Lodge in Blackburn as one of the most exciting projects the company has in the works. The scheme was described as a “game-changer” for patients, but Dr Mark Dziobon, the medical director for Blackburn with Darwen and NHS East Lancashire CCGs.
Murphy also said Assura was well-positioned to grow.
“With the UK’s healthcare estate lacking the critical buildings and facilities to tackle the growing backlog of treatments following the pandemic, we know the development of modern, integrated, and high-quality primary care space is a key enabler in reducing this pressure,” Murphy said.
“This area benefits from cross-party political support and Assura is committed to making a significant contribution – all the while accommodating for key emerging trends, including hybrid GP appointments, the requirement for mental health support, and digitalisation.”
He added later: “Against an uncertain economic backdrop, Assura’s steady and reliable business model, strong balance sheet and differentiated market position means it is extremely well-positioned to continue growing and delivering shareholder value.
“We remain confident in Assura’s outlook for the coming year and beyond.”
Murphy also emphasised the group’s commitment to having all its buildings be net zero in operation by 2040. That builds upon Assura’s previous goal of having existing buildings reach an EPC rating of B by 2026.
In order to reach net zero by 2040, Murphy acknowledged there need to be lots of retrofit projects.
“That’s a big focus for us this year,” he said. “It’s a huge amount to do, but we’re very much taking the lead on this.”
Assura has already completed 40 this year and hopes to begin work on 40 to 50 other retrofit schemes soon.
Murphy also said that when it came to new builds, Assura had a target of reducing embodied carbon that was ahead of the RIBA 2030 target. “We’re pushing way beyond industry standard,” he said. Offsetting, Murphy went on, was a last resort strategy for the group.
Prices for shares in Assura were up 2.41% on the morning of the announcement. Assura’s market cap is £2bn, according to the London Stock Exchange. Read the company’s full results.