Property & Construction Daily

The Property & Construction Daily provides a sector-specific comment from leading analyst Alastair Stewart. His daily perspective provides a round-up of market statements, news, economics and views from the property and construction sectors.

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March 21, 2024


Company news

Aukett Swanke Group (AUK, 1.1p, £3.2m)

UK’s only quoted architect, active in UK, Middle East and Europe, providing smart Buildings, architectural and design services. Acquisition and subscription. Aukett subsidiary Torpedo Factory Ltd (TFL) has acquired certain assets of RTS Technology Solutions Limited (in liquidation), a company trading as Vanti, which provided master system integration and smart building software to commercial properties in the UK. The acquisition introduces revenues from RTS’s smart buildings software and, in the opinion of the directors, marks a significant step forward in the group’s quest to become a leading smart buildings provider. The group intends to employ new staff to be based in a new Birmingham office, to be leased from a third party, to form the core of the group’s smart buildings offering. RTS was founded in 2006 but as a result of a lack of funding was liquidated on 18 March with TFL completing the acquisition on 20 March. The consideration payable by TFL for the assets comprises an initial cash payment of approximately £37,000, with an additional up to £50,000 payable over the next 18 months dependent on the satisfaction of certain financial performance conditions.

Share subscription: Aukett is raising in aggregate up to £425,000 before expenses through the issue of new equity, for the purposes of providing the group with working capital for its increased scale.  £275,000 is being raised by way of direct subscriptions by certain existing and institutional investors. In addition, certain directors and managers of the group have indicated their intention to subscribe for up to £150,000 on the same terms as the investors. In aggregate the Subscription will result in the issue and allotment of a total of up to 42,500,000 new ordinary shares of 1p each at an issue price of 1p. Subscribers will receive warrants, exercisable for three years, to be issued (subject to certain conditions) on the basis of one warrant for every one subscription share with an exercise price of 1p.

Outlook: “As previously indicated and in keeping with the trading pattern in the previous year the group expects to report a loss for the first half of the current financial year with a stronger performance in the second half”. FY (Sep) 23 results expected 28 March.

abrdn Property Income Trust (API, 53p, £203m)

Specialist UK ‘last mile’ logistics real estate investment trust. API Board reiterates its unanimous recommendation of the CREI Merger.” The API Board reaffirms its belief that the all-share merger with Custodian Property Income REIT [CREI, 70p, £309m] represents the best outcome for API Shareholders and reiterates its unanimous recommendation that API Shareholders vote in favour of the CREI Merger, either by proxy by 10 am on Monday 25 March or in person at the shareholder meetings on Wednesday 27 March 2024. CREI Shareholders have approved the CREI merger with a majority of approximately 98% of shares voted, and Urban Logistics REIT [SHED, 117p, £553m] has confirmed that it will not make a firm offer or alternative proposal for API. The choice now for API Shareholders is whether to approve the CREI Merger which delivers a premium to the undisturbed share price, an immediate 7.3% uplift in annualised dividends that are fully covered, superior growth prospects and greater scale and liquidity”.

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