Firm follows Land Securities and British Land in seeing profits tumble

Rathbone Place

Great Portland Estates (GPE) has become the third developer in as many days to say Brexit has hit its numbers as the firm turned in a half year loss.

The Rathbone Place developer racked up a £62.7m pre-tax loss in the six months to September, compared to a £371m pre-tax profit for the same period last year. The valuation of its portfolio dropped 3.7% to £3.8bn.

GPE also posted a 17% fall in revenue to £57.4m, down from £69.5m for the same period last year.

Earlier this week, both Land Securities and British Land said uncertainty caused by the decision to leave the EU in June had hit the pair with profits at both crashing into the red.

Toby Courtauld, chief executive, said: “The referendum result has had a negative effect on business confidence in London which will likely result in lower economic growth.

“As a consequence, we can expect London’s commercial property markets to weaken during this period of uncertainty. However, the broad spread and depth of its economic activity and a growing population will, we believe, help to ensure that London maintains its position as a truly global city and Europe’s business capital.”

He added: “Our balance sheet has never been stronger and gearing never lower, giving us significant financial capacity to exploit any market weakness, just as we did in 2009; and, we have a first class team ready to capitalise on this period of uncertainty.”

GPE said its current development programme consisted of five schemes with all but one in the West End and all due for completion in the next 15 months.

In addition, GPE has two uncommitted schemes in the West End and adjacent to Crossrail stations, Oxford House and Hanover Square, totalling 311,800 sq ft that could begin in the next 18 months.