Hammerson has announced it is planning to slash rents for retail tenants by around 30% as non-essential shops prepare to reopen.
Mark Bourgeois, the group’s managing director, said: “We reckon across the board and our business we’ll probably reduce rents from their peak by about 30% so we are really doing our bit as are all landlords to make sure we maintain vibrancy in these centres.”
The group noted that footfall at its flagship stores is currently around four-fifths of that achieved in the same week in April 2019, however this is a marked improvement from its footfall numbers when it initially reopened in June 2020 from the first lockdown.
Furthermore, Hammerson revealed it has collected less than half of net rental income in the second quarter of the financial year, with only 40% of the rent being received for the three months to 5 March at a group level.
The group collected 48% of rent from its UK properties, and 23% and 34% from its French and Irish properties, respectively.
Following this news, Hammeson has hired Himanshu Raja as the group’s chief financial officer, who will succeed James Lenton who resigned in January.
Rita-Rose Gagné, chief executive of Hammerson, said: “Himanshu is an experienced CFO who brings a blend of strong financial, strategic and leadership qualities.
“On behalf of the board, and all colleagues I look forward to welcoming him to the company and benefitting from his insight and experience.”