Firm’s European arm boosted by Greenwich Peninsula stake sale

Lend Lease’s European division enjoyed a 41% growth in after-tax profit in its first half results to 31 December 2012, primarily thanks to the sale of its 50% stake in Greenwich Penninsula.

Lend Lease sold its stake in the 150-acre regeneration scheme to Hong Kong property investor Knight Dragon for £100m in June last year, resulting in a circa £25m profit.

The firm said at the time of the sale that it would reinvest the profit in other London regeneration schemes, including its redevelopment of Elephant and Castle and International Quarter in Stratford.

The sale helped boost European after-tax profit by 41% to AUS$60.5m (£40m) from AUS$43m (£28.7m) the previous year.

In an Australian stock exchange update, the full group posted a 37% growth in after-tax profit to AUS$302.3m (£201.7m), from AUS$217.8m (£145.3m) the previous year.

European construction work secured over the period totalled AUS$729.4m (£486.6m), including the £170m Kingsgate House office-led project for Land Securities in London.

Lend Lease group chief executive officer and managing director, Steve McCann, said:”Lend Lease had a very successful first half result delivering growth in operating profit after tax of 37%.

“The Group continues to successfully execute its strategy, with highlights including progress on the Barangaroo South project and being awarded two major projects in Australia, the A$2.0 billion Sunshine Coast University Hospital and the A$2.5 billion Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct.

“Overseas the Group continued to focus on the delivery and conversion of its significant global development pipeline. The Jem mixed-use development in Singapore is progressing well and planning permission was granted for the masterplan for the £1.5 billion Elephant & Castle urban regeneration project in Central London. In the USA, Lend Lease completed the sale of the first healthcare development undertaken by the Americas Development business.

“Globally, the Group has built a strong pipeline with construction backlog revenue of approximately A$17.8 billion including projects at preferred bidder status, and a global development pipeline with an end development value of approximately A$21.4 billion.”