Songbird posts annual loss of £84.1m

But the real estate group improves its investment and retail portfolio.

Canary Wharf Crossrail station’s first platform level.
Canary Wharf Crossrail station’s first platform level completed ahead of schedule.

Songbird Estates, parent company of the real estate developer Canary Wharf Group, has posted a loss before tax of £84.1m for the year ended 31 December 2011 – a substantial drop from £420.9m the previous year.

Total comprehensive income came to £79.8m, while underlying operating profit was £207.4m.

Rental income (excluding tenant incentives adjustments) was £251.3m (2010: £287.5m).

As of 31 December 2011, the company had adjusted net assets of £1.45bn, a year-on-year rise of 1.6 per cent from £1.43bn.

Songbird said that its development pipeline remains on track, on budget and on schedule, with construction at 25 Churchill Place under way, the Crossrail station to be handed over five months ahead of schedule and the joint-venture project at 20 Fenchurch Street set to be delivered on time.

The company’s retail portfolio valuation increased 8.1 per cent over the year and turnover by 2.2 per cent, while the market value of the investment portfolio rose by 1.3 per cent.

According to David Pritchard, chairman of Songbird, the group remained successful across all activities ranging from construction through to leasing and asset management and continued steps are being taken to drive future growth. Canary Wharf retail had another outstanding year, with valuations increasing by 8.1 per cent.

In 2012, Songbird signed a lease extension with Bank of New York Mellon on over 152,000 square feet in One Canada Square at £42.50 per square foot (10.4 per cent ahead of built ERV). The group anticipates demand for high-grade office space across London this year, due to the Olympics and the Queen’s Jubilee.