Share buy back 4.82% of shares

lse:blnd

#1

They have set aside £300m to buy back own shares. I calculate this to represent 4.82% of shares based on Mkt Cap of £6,220m. About the same as they pay out in dividend. I would prefer a special dividend instead. A special div of similar amount would be expected to make SP fall about 4.8% on ex-div day. SP up about 3% today so perhaps justified.

Just been looking at details for BLND on SharePad. Lots not good which explains under performance over the last few years. FCF Converversion only 20% (A value below 100% indicates that the company is collecting less cash than it is booking as profit. There can be good reasons for this such as capital expenditure. Where free cash conversion is 75% or higher the value will be covered green; between 25% and 75%, orange; and below 25%, red.). ROCE is only 3.2% which is poor.

Dividends good with a forecast yield of 5.0% covered 1.2X and 6 years of div growth. Very good bit is forecast pre-tax profit growth of 97.6%. Because of that I’ll give them a weak buy opinion.


#2

NAV yeild and LTV is what I look at in this sector,
coupled with asset quality/location.
You can visit some of their retail properties and London campuses.

GPOR and LAND have outperformed BLND (GPOR significantly so)
in sp terms over the past 5 years. Some of this is because of BLND’s higher discount to NAV,
however there are also other factors involved.


#3

“FCF Converversion only 20% (A value below 100% indicates that the company is collecting less cash than it is booking as profit.”

For a commercial property company that is not necessarily an indicator of poor cash flow. BLND’s assets are mostly non-moving commercial buildings which only generate a relatively small cash yield as rental and service charge income.

Most of BLND’s profit is non-cash asset appreciation. So we cannot expect a fountain of cash as we might in other sectors such as retail/manufacturing sales, banking or insurance. What we get instead is quality bricks and mortar which … hopefully … will appreciate in value over the long term both through well-executed development of the buildings they have, and general market appreciation, which I agree hasn’t been great given the turmoil we have endured.

Cash inflows arising from rents are only the icing on the bigger cake.

And yes LAND has outperformed BLND. I am in both.


#4

I’m no expert on REITS, but I do know they have to pay out 90% of cashflow profits in divi. Have to. I’ve always thought that was nuts, squirreling away for a rainy day appeals to me. so all of them have delevered to ensure they can survive a rainy day… BL have hugely upgraded their portfolio, either out of cashflow or borrowing to develop. So as I said before, they aren’t meant to shoot lights out, The REIT format was created to copy the US, where they are low risk divi payers, in a generous tax regime. They aren’t meant to be very “entrepreneurial” and their management reflects that. Also try to move the needle on a £6 or £10 billion portfolio. It’s not easy. You buy £1bn 10% cheaply say, you make £100M, that’s great but it hardly moves the needle. so they all work hard on the income side… It should only be which side of NAV they trade, I still think BL is a high discount to Lands, but the market doesn’t agree. GPE has little in the City and a lot N Oxford Street and midtown, where rent performance has been stellar. Mostly historic ownerships, but also some good buying. If you want yield, it’s ok, if you want growth, look to other companies. And if interest rates go up a lot, look out below, but that is a big if… GLS SL


#5

I’m no expert on REITS, but I do know they have to pay out 90% of cashflow profits in divi. Have to. I’ve always thought that was nuts, squirreling away for a rainy day appeals to me. so all of them have delevered to ensure they can survive a rainy day… BL have hugely upgraded their portfolio, either out of cashflow or borrowing to develop. So as I said before, they aren’t meant to shoot lights out, The REIT format was created to copy the US, where they are low risk divi payers, in a generous tax regime. They aren’t meant to be very “entrepreneurial” and their management reflects that. Also try to move the needle on a £6 or £10 billion portfolio. It’s not easy. You buy £1bn 10% cheaply say, you make £100M, that’s great but it hardly moves the needle. so they all work hard on the income side… It should only be which side of NAV they trade, I still think BL is a high discount to Lands, but the market doesn’t agree. GPE has little in the City and a lot N Oxford Street and midtown, where rent performance has been stellar. Mostly historic ownerships, but also some good buying. If you want yield, it’s ok, if you want growth, look to other companies. And if interest rates go up a lot, look out below, but that is a big if… GLA SL


#6

“And if interest rates go up a lot, look out below, but that is a big if… GLS SL”

stilllearning – is this the only issue with holding a company like BLND. The dividend cover is slim at 1.2% on earnings – I’m guessing it’s barely covered by cash flow.
Also 50% of the assets are in retail. If there is to be a comparison with the US going forward, the retail parks are becoming ghost towns in many areas and some are being completely shuttered up.

The dividend growth is just about inline with inflation at 2.5%-2.9% a year so it just ticks over on that score. The dividend is high, but that wouldn’t count for much if interest rates went up because they wouldn’t be able to pay it at that level.

The ROCE is 2% – so you are just waiting for a recession while you collect your dividend and then…

Games


#7

Some truth in that. Divi cover can never be higher, they have to distribute under the REIT rules, which is what I think is nuts about REITS. Retail is a tricky space. Ox St, Bond st, for example, and the good shopping centres are seeing rental growth, some huge, mostly London, it’s about tenant mix, destination and experience. They still get long leases too. Some with indexation, so that ticks up with inflation, and some with turnover kickers. Restos etc still pay increasing rents. But I agree, I’m not a fan of retail.

A lot of their debt is long term and cheap, so cashflow shouldn’t be effected. Cap rates would go up though, meaning values would fall, hence my comment on interest rates. The flip side is that if rates go up, earnings and rents should too. Should, not will. I’m cautious!

Long term, I don’t fancy BL, short term, the divi is OK and market moods change, they might come back into fashion and get a bounce. Can the discount get much bigger, its about the least popular in the sector?

If I had to, I’d say weak buy or hold, but I never tend to tick those boxes. It depends what you are after. I have a mixture of yield and capital growth, this is yield for me, with some upside. my finger hovers over the sell button, but never gets there! Maybe I should be more disciplined, I can’t decide… I didn’t know ROCE, that is shocking. SL


#8

BLND retail sector exposure has exacerbated discount to NAV.

However the quality of this portfolio looks significantly stronger
than 4/5 years ago imv. Lots of detail in presentations available on their
Investors site.


#9

“The ROCE is 2%”

Average ROCE is +10% over past few years. How did you calculate 2%?

Agree returns are unexciting, but I’m holding as I favour boring and reliable which these are.


#10

Having sold some of my HLCL today, looking to add BLND,
preferably on a bad day.


#11

aspace “Average ROCE is +10% over past few years. How did you calculate 2%?”
I subscribe to ShareScope and SharePad. SharePad today gives ROCE 3.2% with 3 year average 6.3% showing ROCE has got worse. I assume change in figures from last week is result of data update from recent results. Calculated as follows: “Return on Capital Employed is EBIT (earnings (profits) before interest and tax) as a percentage of average Capital employed. EBIT is normalised if possible.” Normalised EBIT is removal of non-recurring expenses or revenue.