DGAP-News: HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung / Key word(s): Real Estate/Annual Report
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Solid growth course: HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft expands its holdings and completes a successful financial year 2021
- Growth of holdings by 15% to currently around 73,500 residential units (as of January 2022)
- Issue of three bonds to finance expansion with a total volume of EUR 1.7 billion at an average interest rate of 0.647 %
- At EUR 180.5 million, FFO (Funds from operations) at level of previous year
- Adjusted EBIDTA of EUR 216.1 million (2020: EUR 213.5 million)
- Total investments of approximately EUR 500 million
Berlin, 28 April 2022. The state-owned HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mbH published its IFRS annual statement of accounts for 2021 today and can report another successful financial year. As HOWOGE managing director Ulrich Schiller explains, "The year 2021 was characterised by growth. Overall, we built more than 500 new apartments, which were then added to our portfolio, and acquired almost 9,000 apartments as well. Accordingly, we can report growth in our holdings of 15 per cent in 2021." HOWOGE managing director Thomas Felgenhauer adds, "To finance its course of growth, HOWOGE set up a debt issuance programme for the first time. The company's excellent credit rating and the very successful issue of our first three bonds, with which we established our access to the capital markets, are important pillars in ensuring that we can continue to implement this strategy."
Successful operating result
The loan-to-value ratio (LTV) was 18 % as of 31 December 2021. As a result of the financing measures for our most recent acquisitions, it will rise to under 30 %, thus providing scope for further growth within our target corridor for LTV of below 50 %.
Capital structure and capital market orientation
The high quality of HOWOGE's property portfolio and the company's economic strength and stability were confirmed in 2021 by its first issuer credit rating. The rating agencies S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings gave HOWOGE an issuer credit rating of A and AA-, respectively. Based on these ratings, the company was able to successfully issue its first corporate bonds with a volume of EUR 1.7 billion. The transaction consisted of unsecured, fixed-interest tranches with maturities of 3, 7 and 12 years and an average interest rate of 0.647 %. The issuance met with demand throughout Europe and was oversubscribed fivefold, which is clear evidence of the attractiveness and quality of HOWOGE's portfolio. The proceeds from this transaction were earmarked primarily for the financing of the acquired portfolio from Deutsche Wohnen and Vonovia. This transaction was completed in January 2022.
Growth and portfolio
Sustainability as the basis of our business strategy
HOWOGE has also once again confirmed its ambitious goal of achieving climate-neutral portfolio. To achieve this goal, HOWOGE is planning to build new housing in future that is as climate-neutral as possible. In its existing housing stock, the company plans to systematically replace the primary energy source for heating and hot water and also the energy source for electricity with alternatives. And the aim in all of this is to develop solutions for entire neighbourhoods. For one estate, for example, there are studies underway into heat recovery from waste water. Moreover, the use of wind turbines or heat pumps in zero-energy housing that is supplied exclusively with green electricity is on the agenda. In the meantime, HOWOGE Wärme GmbH, a subsidiary of the company, is operating 24 plants that use renewable forms of energy. In 2021 alone, this meant that it was possible to generate a total of 900 MWh of CO2-free electricity and thereby to save around 329 tons of CO2.
HOWOGE is very well positioned in the market and has created important preconditions for being able to systematically continue its course of growth. At the same time, the key element of the company's strategy is and remains its social responsibility. Accordingly, HOWOGE thinks in terms of entire neighbourhoods and integrates social infrastructure, retail and commercial spaces, and forward-looking sustainability and mobility concepts into the development of these neighbourhoods. In 2021, the company invested around EUR 2.5 million in social projects. In addition, HOWOGE's charitable foundation Stiftung Stadtkultur is making a contribution to strengthening social, intergenerational and intercultural exchange. As part of Berlin's school building campaign, HOWOGE is also taking on for the State of Berlin the building of 19 new schools, up to 7 timber-frame schools and the refurbishment of 13 schools (as of April 2022). In 2021, the foundation stone was laid for the first new school building for 1,600 pupils. The building will accommodate a grammar school and community school on one campus.
Outlook / Forecast
The key task in the financial year 2022 is to integrate the portfolio that HOWOGE has acquired. Beyond this, HOWOGE will monitor the market with regard to possible acquisition opportunities. As part of its new-build strategy, HOWOGE will create around 1,700 apartments in 2022, providing a home for more than 3,000 tenants. The company anticipates an FFO of around EUR 186 million in its business operations.
HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mbH is one of six municipal housing companies owned by the State of Berlin. With a housing portfolio of more than 73,500 apartments, the company is one of Germany's largest landlords. In the medium to long term, HOWOGE intends to grow its housing portfolio to around 100,000 apartments, in particular through new construction. As part of Berlin's school building campaign, HOWOGE is also building and carrying out major school refurbishments for the State of Berlin.
"Designing a liveable Berlin of tomorrow - more than just a place to live"
This publication is neither an offer to sell nor a solicitation to buy securities.
To the extent that this announcement contains forward-looking statements, such statements do not represent facts and are characterised by the words "expect", "believe", "estimate", "intend", "aim", "assume" or similar expressions. Such statements express the intentions, opinions or current expectations and assumptions of HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mbH and are based on current plans, estimates and forecasts which HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mbH has made to the best of its knowledge, but which do not claim to be correct in the future. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict and usually cannot be influenced by HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mbH. It should be kept in mind that the actual events or developments may differ materially from those contained in or expressed by such forward-looking statements.
28.04.2022 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a service of EQS Group AG.
HOWOGE Wohnungsbaugesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung
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