Aldar Properties, Abu Dhabi’s biggest listed developer, reported Dh1.76 billion in revenue for the first quarter of 2020, unchanged from the same period a year ago, despite the coronavirus pandemic.
“The company’s strength lies in a well-balanced, diversified business model and a robust balance sheet,” Talal Al Dhiyebi, chief executive of Aldar said in a statement.
“We benefit from the financial firepower to weather the current global crisis, and to take advantage of attractive opportunities to expand our investment portfolio. Aldar continues to prudently manage its business to mitigate the impact of the global crisis and enhance long-term value for our stakeholders.”
The profit fell 39 per cent to Dh302 million during the period due to higher provisions, impairments and write downs and loss on revaluation of investment properties, the company said in a statement to the Abu Dhabi Securities Market, where its shares trade.
Provisions, impairments and write downs more than doubled to Dh33.2m and loss on revaluation of investment properties rose to Dh135m in the first quarter from Dh40m during the same period last year.
Revenue from Aldar’s development management business climbed 13 per cent year-on-year to Dh808m, driven by progress on recently awarded government projects valued at Dh5bn, including the new twofour54 campus on Yas Island.
Development sales totalled Dh333m led by inventory sales, according to the company on Thursday.
Aldar held Dh6.8bn of free cash and undrawn credit facilities at the end of the first quarter including a new Dh500m credit facility.
Earlier this month Aldar increased its support to property, education and retail customers to Dh190m to supplement the government's efforts to soften the blow of the coronavirus pandemic on the emirate’s economy.
The developer also set aside Dh4bn to make sure its contractors, suppliers and consultants are paid on time.
It also partnered with banks in Abu Dhabi to offer home finance at low-interest rates at some of its developments in the capital.
The company, teamed up with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank and First Abu Dhabi Bank to offer finance at a fixed rate of 1.99 per cent for three or five years with no application or valuation fees.
The UAE, the second-biggest Arab economy, was the first in the region to introduce Dh282bn in fiscal and monetary support, including a Dh256bn package for banks that provided zero-interest funding and freed up capital to boost lending in the country.
“We are in a strong position to navigate these uncertainties because of our diversified business model, low debt, strong cash position and underlying strength of Abu Dhabi’s economy,” Greg Fewer, Aldar’s chief finance and sustainability officer said in a media conference call.
The company is going to revisit its sales guidance of Dh4bn for 2020 due to Covid-19 crisis, he added.
“We’ve got extremely important and exciting destinations and developments that we absolutely intend to bring onto the market," Mr Fewer said.
"We’ve already announced our intention to launch The Grove – at Saadiyat that will happen. We are just assessing the market right now to launch the project at the correct time. We’ve also got exciting middle income opportunities.”