- Primary care property investor and developer Assura's underlying pre-tax profits rose to £19.8 million in the six months to the end of September - 75.2% up on last time.

Net rental income increased 17% to £32.9 million in the period and diluted EPRA net asset value grew 3% to 47.2 pence per share at the period-end.

The group said the growth in underlying profits reflected the benefit of completed developments and acquisitions, reduced financing costs and efficiencies from its internally managed model driving down the EPRA Cost Ratio. Interim chief executive Jonathan Murphy said: "Assura has grown significantly in the first half of the year, reflecting the benefit of completed developments and acquisitions. The Group is well positioned as a sector leader in a market that is in critical need of investment. There is a growing consensus that primary care must play a bigger role in health provision and the Group is ideally placed with the expertise, scale and financial flexibility to help the NHS develop our nation's primary care infrastructure."

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