North East investment fund achieves record loan levels in support of regional property developments

Apr 04 2022

TOC Property Backed Lending Trust PLC (PBLT) managed by Newcastle upon Tyne-based wealth management and property lending specialist, Tier One Capital Ltd (Tier One), has achieved record levels of new loan facilities in support of property developments in the North East and Scotland.

Announcing its full trading update for the financial year ending 30 November 2021, the London Stock Exchange listed company has reported annual new loan facilities of £13.9 million, the highest since it was founded in 2017.

These new loans have been deployed across five developments in the residential and commercial property sectors.

As of November 2021, 17 projects are benefiting from PBLT loans, split between 12 residential projects and five projects with a commercial focus.

In its latest financial year, PBLT achieved profits of £929,000, an increase from £856,000 in the previous 12 months, despite annual net income slipping slightly to £1.697m in 2021 from £1.894m in 2020.

The company generated an earnings per share of 3.45p, an increase from the previous year figure of 3.18p and returned a dividend of 4p per share, an increase from 3p per share in 2020. It also saw its Net Asset value total return increase from 3.9 percent in 2020 to 4.8 percent in 2021.

Ian McElroy, Chief Executive of Tier One, the investment adviser to PBLT said: “The quality of our loan portfolio reflects the growing standing of PBLT as a credible alternative lending resource for developers and the strong activity in the property market.

“We have used this year to protect shareholder value and maintain our strategy of managing a balanced portfolio across residential and commercial schemes.

“We have also continued our focus on liquidity within the fund as there remains elements of volatility in the market from the pandemic, Brexit and the conflict in Ukraine.

“As a result, we have created fund headroom of £11m at the end of the year, which is contributing to our ongoing ambitions to support developments, predominately in the North East, but also in Scotland, with a strong pipeline of potential schemes at varied stages of progress.”

Brendan O’Grady, Fund Manager at Tier One, added: “In addition to PBLT’s record lending in the last year, the pipeline of opportunity in both commercial and residential projects is also the strongest we have seen. Post year end, we have already announced our support to Harrow Living for the build of executive homes at Morpeth and there are a number of other loans going through due diligence at this time.

“The residential housing market has seen considerable growth over the past 12 months and the outlook among analysts for 2022 and beyond looks positive.

“Our focus areas of the North East and Scotland are forecast by Savills to have growth of 17.6 percent and 15.9 percent respectively, above the national average of 13.1 percent. This gives us further confidence in our commitment to supporting property developers with targeted lending facilities that support schemes and deliver positive returns for shareholders.

“Whilst there are particular challenges from rising construction costs, we are nevertheless confident of further growth in the year ahead. We look forward to continuing our proud progress of supporting both the communities we serve and job creation within them.”

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