- Warehouse property investor Tritax Big Box REIT saw operating profit jump 24.7% in the first half of 2020 helped by high levels of rent collection and an increase in portfolio value.

In its results for the six months ended 30 June 2020, the company reported operating profit of £70.6m, up 24.7% and declared a second quarter dividend of 1.5625p, resulting in a first-half dividend of 3.125p per share.

It reported strong rent collection during the Covid-19 pandemic, receiving 97% of second quarter 2020 rent and with 99% of third quarter 2020 rent expected to be received by the end of the quarter.

Total portfolio value grew 6.1% to £4.18bn at 30 June 2020, which it said included a portfolio capital value gain of 1.5% net of costs.

The company also announced it has secured a pre-let with Amazon on Europe's largest logistics facility, with the 20-year pre-let agreed with Amazon for 2.3 million sq ft subject to index linked annual upward only rent reviews.

It said that from the start of construction (June 2020) the project will generate 21 years of income at a yield on cost of 6%.

At the end of the period, loan-to-value of 31.8% was in line with its stated target range of 30% to 35%.

Chairman Richard Jewson said: 'Covid-19 created a challenging backdrop, but our company has performed well during the first half of the year delivering high levels of rent collection, stable earnings and an increase in portfolio value and rents driven by effective asset management and development activity.'

At 10:04am: [LON:BBOX] Tritax Big Box Reit PLC share price was +0.6p at 157.1p

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