Assura Urmston

Assura targets further deals after strong first half

The primary care developer and investor reported a 75% rise in underlying profit, to £19.8m, in the six months to October compared to the same period last year.

The investment portfolio grew by 10% to £1.2bn during the first half of the Warrington-based group’s financial year. Rent roll rose in line to £70.1m from March’s £63.8m.

Jonathan Murphy, interim chief executive, said: “Assura has grown significantly in the first half of the year, reflecting the benefit of completed developments and acquisitions. The group is well positioned as a sector leader in a market that is in critical need of investment. There is a growing consensus that primary care must play a bigger role in health provision and the Group is ideally placed with the expertise, scale and financial flexibility to help the NHS develop our nation’s primary care infrastructure.”

Assura has a pipeline of £131m of proposed acquisitions and developments. The loan-to-value ratio is 34%, the company said, providing £235m of “investment capacity before reaching the mid-point of our LTV range of 40%-50%, allowing Assura to move quickly as the right investment opportunities arise.”

A 9% increase to the quarterly dividend from January 2017 to 0.60 pence per share was proposed. Shares in Assura were unchanged at 60p.

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