Liberty Property Trust Announces Third Quarter Results

Third quarter highlights include:

  • Net income available to common shareholders $0.37 per diluted share
  • Funds from Operations $0.66 per diluted share
  • Same store operating income increased by 2.6%
  • Same store operating income for the industrial distribution portfolio increased by 3.1%
  • Industrial distribution rents increased 12.4%
  • $400 million of 10-year, 3.25% unsecured notes issued, proceeds used in part to prepay $300 million of 10-year unsecured notes with an interest rate of 5.5%

Subsequent events:

  • As previously announced, Liberty completed the sale of 7.6 million square feet of suburban properties for $969 million.
  • Announced forthcoming redemption of our 2017 and 2018 unsecured notes totaling $397 million

Earnings Guidance:

  • Liberty revised Funds from Operations Guidance range for 2016 to be $2.36 - $2.38 per diluted share, which includes a charge of $0.18 per diluted share relating to the early extinguishment of debt

MALVERN, Pa., Oct. 25, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT) announced today that net income available to common shareholders for the third quarter of 2016 was $54.3 million, or $0.37 per diluted share, compared to $91.3 million, or $0.61 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2015. Net income available to common shareholders for the 2016 third quarter reflects a $3.5 million ($0.02 per share) debt extinguishment charge and a $3.3 million ($0.02 per share) land sale gain, which are discussed further below.

For the nine months ended September 30, 2016, net income available to common shareholders was $161.4 million, or $1.10 per diluted share, compared to $157.8 million, or $1.06 per diluted share, for the first nine months of 2015.

Funds from Operations
The company uses the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (“NAREIT”) definition of Funds from Operations (“FFO”) as an operating measure of the company’s financial performance. A reconciliation of FFO to GAAP net income is included in the financial data tables accompanying this press release.

FFO available to common shareholders for the third quarter of 2016 was $99.6 million, or $0.66 per diluted share, compared to $102.1 million, or $0.67 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2015. FFO for the third quarter of 2016 reflects a $3.5 million loss ($0.02 per share) due to the early extinguishment of debt and a gain related to the sale by a joint venture of a land leasehold interest in Cambridge, United Kingdom, Liberty’s share of which was $3.3 million ($0.02 per share). These items largely offset each other.

FFO available to common shareholders for the nine months ended September 30, 2016 was $294.8 million, or $1.96 per diluted share, compared to $311.7 million, or $2.04 per diluted share, for the first nine months of 2015.

Liberty continues to benefit from the excellent balance of significant demand plus measured supply,” said Bill Hankowsky, chairman and chief executive officer. “During the quarter, our high quality distribution portfolio achieved outstanding occupancy and recorded another quarter of double-digit rent growth. This market dynamic, together with the recent completion of our strategic repositioning and activity that significantly lowered our cost of capital, positions us well for future growth.

Portfolio Performance
Occupancy: At September 30, 2016, Liberty’s in-service portfolio of 104 million square feet was 95.5% occupied, compared to 94.3% at the end of the second quarter of 2016. During the quarter, Liberty completed leasing transactions totaling 9.1 million square feet of space. Liberty’s 83 million square foot industrial distribution portfolio was 97.0% leased, compared to 95.7% at the end of the second quarter.

Same Store Performance: Property level operating income for same store properties increased by 2.9% on a cash basis and by 2.6% on a straight line basis for the third quarter of 2016 compared to the same quarter in 2015. For the nine months ended September 30, 2016, property level operating income for same store properties increased by 3.0% on a cash basis and by 2.4% on a straight line basis, compared to the same period in 2015.

Real Estate Development Activity
Development Deliveries: In the third quarter, Liberty brought into service two development properties for a total investment of $71.4 million. The properties contain 801,000 square feet of leasable space and were 100% leased as of the end of the quarter. The yield on these properties at September 30, 2016 was 8.1%.

A joint venture in which Liberty holds a 25% interest brought into service one development property for a total investment of $44.0 million. The property contains 614,000 square feet and was 100% leased at September 30, 2016 at a current yield of 8.3%.

Development Starts: In the third quarter, Liberty began development of two distribution properties totaling 398,000 square feet of leasable space at a projected investment of $39.6 million. The properties consist of:

  • 1200 Claybrick Road, Landover, MD, 216,000 square feet
  • 1075 King George Post Road, Edison, NJ, 182,000 square feet

Real Estate Disposition Activity
During the third quarter Liberty sold a vacant, 80,000 square foot industrial building in a non-core market for $4.4 million. In addition, a joint venture in which the company holds a 25% interest sold nine properties containing 593,000 square feet of leasable space and six acres of land for $106.7 million. These properties were 67.1% leased at the time of sale. In addition, a joint venture in which Liberty holds a 25% interest sold four operating properties containing 636,000 square feet of leasable space for $32.5 million. These properties were 95.0% leased at the time of sale.

Subsequent to the end of the quarter, Liberty completed the sale of a portfolio of non-core suburban properties, consisting of 108 buildings totaling approximately 7.6 million square feet of leasable space in five markets and approximately 26.7 acres of land in two markets for $969 million. These properties were 88.1% leased at closing.

Balance Sheet and Capital Activity
The Company issued $400 million of ten-year 3.25% Senior Unsecured Notes and prepaid in full its $300 million of ten-year 5.5% Senior Unsecured Notes due December 2016. Subsequent to quarter end, Liberty also fully paid down its line of credit balance, which had been at $420 million at quarter end and announced the redemption in full of $296.5 million of 6.625% Senior Unsecured Notes due October 2017 and $100.0 million of 7.5% Medium Term Notes due January 2018. In addition to the debt extinguishment charge discussed above, the Company also expects to incur a $0.16 per diluted share debt extinguishment charge in the fourth quarter of 2016.

2016 Outlook
The estimates and assumptions presented below are forward looking and are based on the company’s future view of the industrial and office real estate markets and of general economic conditions, as well as other risks outlined below under the caption “Forward-Looking Statements.” There can be no assurance that the company’s actual results will not differ materially from the estimates set forth below. The company assumes no obligation to update this guidance in the future.

Current
Outlook
Previously
Issued
Outlook
Net income, per diluted share(1)$2.52 - $2.54$2.60 - $2.70
Depreciation and amortization of unconsolidated
joint ventures
0.07 – 0.080.04 – 0.07
Depreciation and amortization1.35 – 1.351.29 – 1.32
Gain on property dispositions(2)(1.60) – (1.58)(1.66) – (1.70)
Noncontrolling interest share of addbacks0.02 – (0.01)0.03 – 0.01
FFO, per diluted share(1)$2.36 - $2.38$2.30 - $2.40

(1) The company’s outlook includes a charge relating to the early extinguishment of indebtedness of approximately $0.18 per diluted share to be incurred in the third and fourth quarters of 2016.

(2) Includes equity share of gain on disposition of unconsolidated joint ventures.

About the Company
Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT) is a leader in commercial real estate, serving customers in the United States and United Kingdom, through the development, acquisition, ownership and management of superior office and industrial properties. Liberty's 96 million square foot portfolio includes 566 properties which provide office, distribution and light manufacturing facilities to 1,200 tenants.

Additional information about the company, including Liberty’s Quarterly Supplemental Package with detailed financial information is available in the Investors section of the company’s web site at www.libertyproperty.com. If you are unable to access the web site, a copy of the supplemental package may be obtained by contacting Liberty by phone at 610-648-1704, or by e-mail to jleonard@libertyproperty.com.

Liberty will host a conference call during which management will discuss third quarter results, on Tuesday, October 25, 2016, at 1 p.m. Eastern Time. To access the conference call, please dial 855-277-7530. The passcode needed for access is 70954672. A replay of the call will be available until November 25, 2016, by dialing 1-855-859-2056 using the same passcode as above. The call can also be accessed via the Internet on the Investors page of Liberty’s web site at www.libertyproperty.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

The statements contained in this press release may include forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities law. These forward-looking statements include statements relating to, among others things, completion of the disposition and financing transactions described in this press release, our future dividend policy, achievement of strategic targets, expectations for our operating results, business and financial condition, business and our growth prospects, as well as statements that are generally accompanied by words such as “believes,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,” “should,” “seeks,” “intends,” “proposed,” “projected,” “planned,” “outlook,” “remain confident,” and “goal” or similar expressions. Although Liberty believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectations will be achieved. As forward-looking statements, these statements involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expected results. These risks, uncertainties and other factors include, without limitation, uncertainties affecting real estate business generally (such as entry into new leases, renewals of leases and dependence on tenants’ business operations), risks relating to the integration of the operations of entities that we have acquired or may acquire, risks relating to our plans for disposing of certain properties, risks relating to financing arrangements and sales of securities, possible environmental liabilities, risks relating to leverage and debt service (including availability of financing terms acceptable to the company and sensitivity of the company’s operations and financing arrangements to fluctuations in interest rates), dependence on the primary markets in which the company’s properties are located, the existence of complex regulations relating to status as a REIT and the adverse consequences of the failure to qualify as a REIT, risks relating to litigation, including without limitation litigation involving entities that we have a acquired or may acquire, and the potential adverse impact of market interest rates on the market price for the company’s securities, and other risks and uncertainties detailed in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company assumes no obligation to update or supplement forward-looking statements that become untrue because of subsequent events.

Liberty Property Trust
Statement of Operations
September 30, 2016
(Unaudited and in thousands, except per share amounts)
Quarter Ended Nine Months Ended
September 30, 2016 September 30, 2015 September 30, 2016 September 30, 2015
Operating Revenue
Rental $ 140,697 $ 145,009 $ 418,896 $ 440,962
Operating expense reimbursement 50,160 53,963 148,757 168,430
Total operating revenue 190,857 198,972 567,653 609,392
Operating Expenses
Rental property 26,496 31,454 79,752 98,973
Real estate taxes 25,968 25,953 76,490 78,579
General and administrative 16,151 15,573 52,770 51,428
Depreciation and amortization 46,920 55,718 154,543 171,347
Impairment - real estate assets - - - 17,118
Total operating expenses 115,535 128,698 363,555 417,445
Operating Income 75,322 70,274 204,098 191,947
Other Income/Expense
Interest and other income 3,153 4,959 12,743 17,911
Loss on debt extinguishment (3,494) - (3,494) -
Interest expense (29,528) (33,559) (91,071) (103,295)
Total other income/expense (29,869) (28,600) (81,822) (85,384)
Income before gain on property dispositions, income taxes, noncontrolling interest
and equity in earnings (loss) of unconsolidated joint ventures 45,453 41,674 122,276 106,563
Gain on property dispositions 1,318 53,467 25,671 57,330
Income taxes (80) (599) (1,633) (2,613)
Equity in earnings (loss) of unconsolidated joint ventures 9,043 (847) 19,540 805
Net Income 55,734 93,695 165,854 162,085
Noncontrolling interest - operating partnerships (1,424) (2,306) (4,250) (4,117)
Noncontrolling interest - consolidated joint ventures (57) (58) (170) (171)
Net Income available to common shareholders $ 54,253 $ 91,331 $ 161,434 $ 157,797
Net income $ 55,734 $ 93,695 $ 165,854 $ 162,085
Other comprehensive loss - foreign currency translation (4,407) (7,970) (23,003) (6,229)
Other comprehensive gain (loss) - derivative instruments 663 (1,220) (1,132) (1,539)
Comprehensive income 51,990 84,505 141,719 154,317
Less: comprehensive income attributable to noncontrolling interest (1,393) (2,148) (3,851) (4,105)
Comprehensive income attributable to common shareholders $ 50,597 $ 82,357 $ 137,868 $ 150,212
Basic income per common share $ 0.37 $ 0.61 $ 1.10 $ 1.06
Diluted income per common share $ 0.37 $ 0.61 $ 1.10 $ 1.06
Weighted average shares
Basic 146,215 148,582 146,121 148,594
Diluted 147,107 149,176 146,788 149,220


Liberty Property Trust
Statement of Funds From Operations
September 30, 2016
(Unaudited and in thousands, except per share amounts)
Quarter Ended Nine Months Ended
September 30, 2016 September 30, 2015 September 30, 2016 September 30, 2015
Per Per Per Per
Weighted Weighted Weighted Weighted
Average Average Average Average
DollarsShare DollarsShare DollarsShare DollarsShare
Reconciliation of net income available to common shareholders to NAREIT FFO available
to common shareholders - basic:
Basic - income available to common shareholders $54,253 $0.37 $91,331 $0.61 $161,434 $1.10 $157,797 $1.06
Adjustments:
Depreciation and amortization of unconsolidated joint ventures 3,768 2,881 8,706 8,891
Depreciation and amortization 46,577 55,322 153,471 170,100
Gain on property dispositions / impairment - real estate assets of unconsolidated joint
ventures (4,994) 3,885 (6,987) 11,316
Gain on property dispositions / impairment - real estate assets (1,318) (53,467) (25,671) (40,212)
Noncontrolling interest share in addback for depreciation and amortization
and gain on property dispositions / impairment - real estate assets (1,035) (202) (3,052) (3,478)
NAREIT Funds from operations available to common shareholders - basic $97,251 $0.67 $99,750 $0.67 $287,901 $1.97 $304,414 $2.05
Reconciliation of net income available to common shareholders to NAREIT FFO available
to common shareholders - diluted:
Diluted - income available to common shareholders $54,253 $0.37 $91,331 $0.61 $161,434 $1.10 $157,797 $1.06
Adjustments:
Depreciation and amortization of unconsolidated joint ventures 3,768 2,881 8,706 8,891
Depreciation and amortization 46,577 55,322 153,471 170,100
Gain on property dispositions / impairment - real estate assets of unconsolidated joint
ventures (4,994) 3,885 (6,987) 11,316
Gain on property dispositions / impairment - real estate assets (1,318) (53,467) (25,671) (40,212)
Noncontrolling interest excluding preferred unit distributions 1,306 2,188 3,896 3,763
NAREIT Funds from operations available to common shareholders - diluted $99,592 $0.66 $102,140 $0.67 $294,849 $1.96 $311,655 $2.04
Reconciliation of weighted average shares:
Weighted average common shares - all basic calculations 146,215 148,582 146,121 148,594
Dilutive shares for long term compensation plans 892 594 667 626
Diluted shares for net income calculations 147,107 149,176 146,788 149,220
Weighted average common units 3,536 3,539 3,538 3,540
Diluted shares for NAREIT Funds from operations calculations 150,643 152,715 150,326 152,760
The Company believes that the calculation of NAREIT Funds from operations is helpful to investors and management as it is a measure of the Company’s operating performance that excludes depreciation and amortization and gains and losses from dispositions of depreciable property. As a result, year over year comparison of NAREIT Funds from operations reflects the impact on operations from trends in occupancy rates, rental rates, operating costs, development activities, general and administrative expenses, and interest costs, providing perspective not immediately apparent from net income. In addition, management believes that NAREIT Funds from operations provides useful information to the investment community about the Company’s financial performance when compared to other REITs since NAREIT Funds from operations is generally recognized as the standard for reporting the operating performance of a REIT. NAREIT Funds from operations available to common shareholders is defined by NAREIT as net income (computed in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”)), excluding gains (or losses) from sales of depreciable property, plus depreciation and amortization, and after adjustments for unconsolidated partnerships and joint ventures. NAREIT Funds from operations available to common shareholders does not represent net income or cash flows from operations as defined by GAAP and does not necessarily indicate that cash flows will be sufficient to fund cash needs. It should not be considered as an alternative to net income as an indicator of the Company’s operating performance or to cash flows as a measure of liquidity. NAREIT Funds from operations available to common shareholders also does not represent cash flows generated from operating, investing or financing activities as defined by GAAP.


Liberty Property Trust
Balance Sheet
September 30, 2016
(Unaudited and in thousands, except share and unit amounts)
September 30, 2016 December 31, 2015
Assets
Real estate:
Land and land improvements$ 1,009,941 $ 1,184,927
Building and improvements 4,409,422 5,131,648
Less: accumulated depreciation (917,201) (1,148,928)
Operating real estate 4,502,162 5,167,647
Development in progress 427,686 360,948
Land held for development 325,444 336,967
Net real estate 5,255,292 5,865,562
Cash and cash equivalents 42,290 35,353
Restricted cash 5,661 9,018
Accounts receivable 13,983 14,343
Deferred rent receivable 106,864 118,787
Deferred financing and leasing costs, net of accumulated
amortization (2016, $153,022; 2015, $175,798) 153,593 192,109
Investments in and advances to unconsolidated joint ventures 236,800 218,454
Assets held for sale 786,272 4,954
Prepaid expenses and other assets 122,167 99,049
Total assets$ 6,722,922 $ 6,557,629
Liabilities
Mortgage loans, net$ 281,384 $ 307,908
Unsecured notes, net 2,675,644 2,580,108
Credit facility 420,000 259,000
Accounts payable 76,599 51,382
Accrued interest 38,954 26,154
Dividend and distributions payable 71,378 71,787
Other liabilities 204,031 243,806
Liabilities held for sale 25,416 -
Total liabilities 3,793,406 3,540,145
Noncontrolling interest - operating partnership - 301,483 preferred units
outstanding as of September 30, 2016 and December 31, 2015 7,537 7,537
Equity
Shareholders' equity
Common shares of beneficial interest, $.001 par value, 283,987,000 shares
authorized, 146,981,465 and 147,577,984 shares issued and outstanding as of
September 30, 2016 and December 31, 2015, respectively 147 148
Additional paid-in capital 3,654,652 3,669,627
Accumulated other comprehensive loss (41,459) (17,893)
Distributions in excess of net income (746,530) (698,954)
Total shareholders' equity 2,866,810 2,952,928
Noncontrolling interest - operating partnership
3,530,031 and 3,539,075 common units outstanding as of September 30, 2016 and
December 31, 2015, respectively 51,250 53,100
Noncontrolling interest - consolidated joint ventures 3,919 3,919
Total equity 2,921,979 3,009,947
Total liabilities, noncontrolling interest - operating partnership and equity$ 6,722,922 $ 6,557,629

Inquiries: Jeanne Leonard, Liberty Property Trust, 610.648.1704

Source:Liberty Property Trust