Industrial landlord Segro gave a mildly positive trading update today for the three months to 30 September.
Segro, which owns 3m sq ft in Trafford Park and more than 2m sq ft at Heywood Distribution Park in Rochdale, said the group's vacancy rate fell to 13.4% from 14.0% at 30 June.
The balance of lettings won and tenants lost remains positive overall, with £8.3m of new annualised rental income generated in Q3 2010, compared to £6.8m income lost from space returned.
Vacancy in the former Brixton portfolio reduced to 19.4% against 21.5% at 30 June 2010.
Ian Coull, chief executive, is to retire "during the course of 2011 once a successor had been appointed." The company said the "process of selecting a successor is underway and will include internal and external candidates."
Coull said: "Occupier markets are still challenging and, as expected, takebacks remained high in the third quarter as customers consolidated their space. Enquiry levels continue to be robust and demand for pre-let developments continues to be encouraging. The capital values of good quality industrial assets appear to have stabilised across our markets and there is good demand for product from a range of investors. Filling up our vacant space remains our primary focus and we are well placed to benefit as underlying markets recover."