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UK Self-Storage Operator Lok'nStore Releases Interim Financial Results for First Half of Fiscal 2017

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U.K. company Lok'nStore Group PLC, which provides self-storage and records-storage services, released interim financial results for the first half of its 2017 fiscal year, which ended Jan. 31. The company reported total revenue of £8.34 million, a 4.5 percent increase from the same period in 2016. Self-storage revenue was £7 million, representing a 3.9 percent year-over-year increase. Same-store occupancy was up 4.6 percent, and average price per square foot increased 1 percent compared to the same period last year.

The company’s records-storage business also grew 8.8 percent compared to a year ago, with revenue tallying £1.15 million. The number of stored boxes increased 8 percent, while the number of stored tapes grew by 27 percent over a 12-month period.

“With strong trading Lok’nStore’s profits continue to grow, as interest costs and taxation also come down,” said CEO Andrew Jacobs. “We are investing in the future growth of the business building more new landmark stores. Our low debt allows this rapid development program to be financed from cash flow and existing bank facilities, while progressively increasing the dividend.”

Lok’nStore has four self-storage projects under development and expects each to be complete by the end of the year, according to a press release. The properties are in Broadstairs, Gillingham, Hemel Hempstead and Wellingborough, England. It has targeted four additional sites for future development. Together, the projects will grow the company’s total rentable space by 30 percent.

“Our new-store development program continues to change the balance of our stores, with new and purpose-built stores accounting for 64 percent of the portfolio,” Jacobs said. “The three new stores we opened in 2016 are all trading well, and the four sites acquired last year for new stores will open in 2017, increasing space by a further 18 percent and adding impetus to sales and earnings growth. Our objective is to open more landmark self-storage centers while remaining conservatively leveraged to deliver robust, predictable growing cash flow and dividends from an expanding asset base.”

The company declared an interim dividend of 3 pence per share, an increase of 12.4 percent from the same period last year.

Founded in 1995, Lok’nStore builds, buys or leases large warehouses or industrial buildings and rents storage units to customers on a weekly basis. It operates 25 self-storage facilities and two records-storage locations in Southern England. The self-storage portfolio is comprised of 12 freehold or long-leasehold properties, seven leasehold sites and six locations under management.

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