U.K. self-storage operator Safestore Holdings PLC has released its financial statement for the first quarter of its 2018 fiscal year, which ended Jan. 31. The report indicates Safestore experienced growth in revenue and occupancy for most of its operating portfolio in France and the United Kingdom but saw a drop in average rental rates across the board.
Total revenue for the period was up 9.8 percent to £35.1 million, with “like-for-like” growth for the group up 4.5 percent, using constant exchange rate, in both operating regions. Same-store revenue in the U.K. grew 4.3 percent, while the company’s Paris business increased 5.5 percent compared to the same period in 2017.
Occupancy across the company’s portfolio was 70 percent at the end of the period, an increase of 1.4 percent. Same-store occupancy was 71.5 percent, an increase of 2.8 percent. U.K. occupancy was 68.9 percent, a 1.9 percent bump from a year ago. Rental rates across the U.K. portfolio fell 4.9 percent year over year, with same-store facilities decreasing 1.1 percent. In France, occupancy was 74.9 percent, down .5 percent from a year ago, while rental rates fell 3 percent.
"Our first-quarter performance has been pleasing, supported by revenue from our recent acquisition of Alligator Self Storage complementing solid like-for-like growth. The strong trading momentum from our Paris stores continued in Q1, combined with encouraging U.K. occupancy growth,” said Frederic Vecchioli, CEO.
"Over the last 18 months, we have consolidated our market-leading positions in the U.K. and Paris with the addition of 30 stores to the portfolio via the acquisitions of Space Maker and Alligator and the opening of six new sites,” Vecchioli continued. “We continue to progress our new store pipeline with four new sites in London (Mitcham, Paddington Marble Arch), Birmingham Merry Hill and Paris Poissy. In addition, our strong and flexible balance sheet allows us to continue to consider value accretive investments as and when they arise.”
The company’s unrented unit space is also a primary source for future revenue growth. "Our priority, and largest opportunity, remains the significant upside from the utilization of our 1.9 million square feet of invested, unlet space,” Vecchioli noted. “We remain confident in the future and focused on the continued delivery of value to all shareholders."
Safestore operates 146 self-storage facilities, including 120 facilities it owns in the U.K. and 26 in France. Its storage properties comprise 6.27 million square feet of storage space and serve approximately 60,000 customers.