Primary Health Properties PLC earnings surge as pandemic boosts demand for

The FTSE 250 group reported a 22.4%jump in earnings over the year, while the value of its portfolio crept up 2% to around £2.58bn

() has reported a strong increase in earnings over 2020 as the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic increased demand for its assets as healthcare providers came under strain.

For the year to December 31, the FTSE 250 firm reported adjusted earnings of £73.1mln, a 22.4% increase on the prior year, while its net rental income jumped 13.4% to £131.2mln.

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PHP also noted that the valuation of its property portfolio had increased by 2% to £2.58bn, while occupancy rates inched up slightly to 99.6% from 99.5% in 2019.

As a result of the strong performance, the firm reported total quarterly dividends for the year of 5.9p per share, a 5.4% increase on 2019.

The company also said that rent collection during the year had “remained robust” into the new financial year, and as of February 17, 99% and 94% had been collected in both the UK and Ireland respectively for the first quarter of 2021, in line with collection rates experienced for 2020.

“We have continued to support the NHS in the UK, HSE in Ireland and our GP occupiers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic which has highlighted the demands on health systems around the world. Many of our primary care facilities and occupiers are now in the front-line of delivering Covid-19 vaccines. We continue to see demand for extra space to help enable the redirection of activities out of hospitals. The need for modern, integrated, local primary healthcare facilities is becoming ever more pressing in order to relieve the pressures being placed on hospitals and A&E departments”, chief executive Harry Hyman said in a statement.

“In early 2021, we successfully completed the internalisation of the group’s management structure which will immediately deliver material financial and operational benefits driving further earnings and dividend growth, enhancing shareholder returns, whilst simultaneously broadening our appeal to a wider investment community and underpinning the next stage of the company’s growth”, he added.

Read MorePrimary Health Properties PLC earnings surge as pandemic boosts demand for

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