First Property AUM up 43%

First Property Group posts statutory pre-tax profits of £4.47m for the six months to the end of September - 0.2% up on last time despite a significant reduction in one-off non-recurring items to £290,000 (2015: £1.58 million).

Total assets under management rose by 43% to £405 million (2015: £283 million) and the adjusted NAV per share was up 20% to 45.86 pence per share (2015: 38.27 pence per share restated).

Other highlights:

- Annualised fund management fee income at the period end, excluding performance fees, increased by 46% to some £1.9 million (2015: £1.3 million)

- Weighted average unexpired fund management contract term increased to 6.42 years (2015: 3.75 years)

- Interim dividend up 3.9% to 0.40 pence per share (2015: 0.385 pence per share)

Chief executive Ben Habib said: "I am very pleased by the continued good progress made by the group.

"Assets under management have grown by 43% since the prior year and we have additional commitments which, once invested, will result in further growth.

"The quality of our earnings has continued to improve with very nearly all our profits being earned from activities of a recurring nature.

"The assets we own and manage are performing well, as are the economies in which we operate and we expect continued earnings growth.

"The contribution to earnings from Group Properties has increased substantially in recent years as a result of us taking advantage of opportunities for which we had no fund management mandates. Going forward, we expect the relative contribution from fund management to rise. The synergies between these two activities further balance the business.

"We are confident that our strong balance sheet, operational gearing and experienced team will continue to drive the Group's growth and look forward to taking advantage of the in-built opportunities available to us."

At 8:16am: (LON:FPO) First Property Group PLC share price was -1.75p at 47p