Developer says becoming a real estate investment trust would have minimal effect on business.

Developer Great Portland Estates has become the latest property firm to moot becoming a real estate investment trust.

In results released this morning, GPE said that it could move to the tax-efficient status with little effect on its development business. It said that a statement would be made in the second half of this year on its possible conversion at the start of next year.

Separately, the company's net asset value rose 29.7% in the year to reach 437p per share, and more than doubled pre-tax profit to £188.0m.

GPE chief executive Toby Courtauld said: "2006 was a strong year for the group. With London's economy expanding at both a healthy and steady rate and occupational markets, particularly in the West End, positioned for a growth phase, the conditions are in place for further healthy returns."