Harworth Group to ramp up progress after strong trading year

Land and property regenerator Harworth Group says it expects its full year results to be ahead of market expectations after a strong trading year.

The Yorkshire business says management actions carried out on development sites has unlocked high value uses, while it has also made positive progress with planning applications, which have underpinned valuation gains. The group said it anticipates that EPRA NDV (European Real Estate Association net disposal value) will be slightly ahead of current market consensus when it announces its results on March 19.

Highlights during the year include the creation of 193,000 sq ft of industrial and logistics space developed during the year, with a remaining pipeline of 37.7m sq ft. It completed the development of 110,000 sq ft of space at Gateway 36 in Barnsley and 83,000 sq ft at the Advanced Manufacturing Park in Rotherham, which is 39% is let, exchanged or in heads of terms.

Work is also under way on a further 187,000 sq ft of space at the AMP, and 1,170 residential plots were also sold during the period, with a remaining pipeline of 27,190 plots. Nine transactions were completed with six different housebuilders, including national and regional operators. Meanwhile, progress has been made in securing a number of planning approvals and forward-funding agreements.

Lynda Shillaw, chief executive of Harworth, said: “Harworth had a strong 2023 and delivered another robust performance. The unique combination of our extensive landbank and applying our specialist skillset to identify and realise the highest value from each of our sites saw us complete serviced land and property sales at prices in line with, or ahead of, book values, achieve lettings ahead of estimated rental values, and progress sites through the planning system, all against an uncertain market backdrop.

“Since re-listing in 2015, Harworth has doubled its EPRA NDV. The progress made across our portfolio in 2023 has meant that our year-end valuation is slightly ahead of expectations, moving us closer to our strategic ambition of becoming a £1bn business by 2027.

“As we enter 2024, there are some signs of optimism in the macro environment whilst our key markets remain characterised by structural undersupply. We are encouraged that we are seeing continued good demand into the new year for our serviced residential land as well as occupier interest in our employment sites.

“This, combined with our long-term through-the-cycle approach, our low loan-to-value and significant financial liquidity means that as well as securing and progressing opportunities to deliver long-term value to investors, we are well positioned to take the management actions that will generate further value gains from our portfolio in the year ahead.”

Original artice – https://business-live.co.uk/all-about/yorkshire-humber

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