Express & Star

Bullring performance boosts Hammerson

Shopping centres group Hammerson says the Bullring in Birmingham experienced the strongest growth in rental value of any of its sites in 2023.

The Bullring shopping centre in Birmingham

It was up by five per cent with 23 new leases being signed there during the year.

Hammerson invested £17 million in the repositioning of the former Debenhams store which made up 15 per cent of the total floor space of the centre which has 152 tenants.

A new Marks & Spencer store opened in November in part of the space and the shopping centre experienced a particularly strong Christmas sales period.

A revaluation gain of £11m has been secured by the Bullring, whilst the rest of Hammerson’s UK flagship destinations reported a deficit of £22m.

At Grand Central, where there are 53 tenants, the former John Lewis store is being converted to a Drum workspace.

Hammerson also owns Martineau Galleries in Birmingham which has 41 tenants.

The group's loss of the year reduced from £164 million in 2022 to £51m. Total gross rental income was down from £215m to £208m.

Chief executive Rita-Rose Gagne said: “Our city centre destinations are in high demand. This year we delivered a positive performance across our key strategic, operational and financial metrics.

“Over the last three years, we have delivered against all strategic milestones. We now have a core portfolio focused on urban locations which are evolving into my vision: vibrant, 24/7 multi-use estates. These destinations are fast growing, and part of the fabric and infrastructure of the cities in which we operate.

“Whilst our eyes are open to the current macro-economic environment, our occupiers are thriving and our visitor numbers are on the rise in our realigned portfolio. We are reaping the rewards of the investments we are making in our core portfolio alongside best-in-class occupiers, which underpins the high levels of demand for our space. We expect this trajectory to continue in the year ahead.

“We have a strong pipeline of leasing and repurposing opportunities. There is still more for us to do, but we are now entering a time where having the capability to invest and operate with discipline and conviction will be rewarded."

It was a record year of leasing with 306 deals in total representing £46m of headline rent.

Across the estate footfall was up three per cent year-on-year and in the UK like-for-like sales rose one per cent.

The group portfolio value was down from £5.1 billion to £4.7bn, mainly due to disposals.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.