Henry Boot FY seen ahead of expectations amid 'strong' trading
Henry Boot shares rallied on Monday as the property investment and development company said full-year results are set to be ahead of its expectations following strong trading across the group’s operations.
In Henry Boot Developments, there has been continued growth in both occupier and investment demand within the industrial and logistics market, leading to positive capital returns and resulting in the company’s investment portfolio valuation exceeding half-year forecasts.
"The business expects further growth in valuations by the end of its financial year due to the planned retention of several assets that are currently under construction," it said.
Henry Boot said strategic acquisitions in both the industrial and logistics market and urban residential market through the first half continue to support its "significant" development pipeline.
"These are providing new opportunities for future development in our key markets, resulting in the group's financial position returning to net debt of circa £13m," it said.
Meanwhile, Henry Boot Construction continues to trade ahead of expectations on an already full orderbook for 2021. The company said Banner Plant's trading levels are back to the levels seen in 2019 and are now trading ahead of budget for the year. Road Link (A69) continues to benefit from an increase in traffic levels which are exceeding initial expectations.
Hallam Land Management and Stonebridge Homes are trading in line and continue to benefit from a buoyant housing market, the company said.
At 1130 BST, the shares were up 5.7% at 275.99p.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: "The near- and long-term implications of the pandemic remain open to debate, but increased home working, higher demand for homes and offices that fulfil the need for more space and air, more calls for urban and suburban sites that make it easier to get to work and ever-higher levels online activity are all possible results - and few firms are well placed to provide solutions as Henry Boot.
"The South Yorkshire firm’s upbeat trading statement is therefore perfectly understandable, as its expertise in land development, construction, residential property and logistics sites means the valuation of its assets continues to rise, thanks to strong demand from investment, industrial and private buyers."