The Crown Estate has reported strong growth in its annual report and accounts for the year ended March 2015.
The Crown Estate has reported record returns to the Treasury of £285m for the year ended 31 March 2015, up 6.7% on 2014.
The client also announced a 16.7% increase in its property value to £11bn for 2015 and a 60% increase in partner funds managed in strategic joint ventures to over £1.5bn.
The strong performance was driven by its West End portfolio and by the growth of its offshore wind portfolio generating revenues of £19.1m up from £15.6m. The value of the off shore wind portfolio also increased by 18% to £590m for the year.
Alison Nimmo, chief executive of Crown Estate, said: “Over ten years we have nearly doubled the value of the business by delivering world leading business destinations and 21st century retail experiences, driving investment in the UK’s renewable energy industry and actively managing one of the nation’s largest rural land portfolios.”
The estate said that following delivery of 400,000 sq ft of office space this year they planned to deliver 50% of total office supply in the core London West End in 2016 and had 615,000 sq ft of West End development currently onsite.
Last week the Crown Estate selected John McAslan & Partners as architect on its latest scheme in the St James’s area (pictured) of the West End, a redevelopment project on the corner of Jermyn Street and Duke Street.
A project team has been established to facilitate a “swift and smooth” transfer of economic assets in Scotland to the Scottish Parliament following the introduction of the Scotland Bill on 28 May in the Queen’s speech, which set out the devolution of these assets.
Sir Stuart Hampson, chairman, said that although the Scottish assets represent less than three per cent of the total value of our business, the political activity in Scotland had taken up a great deal of the estate’s time and resources over the year.
At the 31st March 2015 the value of the Crown’s assets in Scotland were £261.5 million, representing 2.6 per cent of the value of The Crown Estate’s wholly owned property.
The Crown Estate said they ended the year with a cash balance of £552.5m and disposed of assets totalling £451m, including their interest in the Four Seasons hotel on Park Lane, during the year.
They also spent £326.9m on acquisitions and other investments and £179m in development and asset management, including a 10% share in the £381m deal to buy the Church Commissioners’ 64 per cent holding in the Pollen Estate, which includes Savile Row and Cork Street.