Northview Apartment REIT
TSX : NVU.UN

Northview Apartment REIT

November 09, 2016 17:19 ET

Northview Apartment REIT Reports Q3 2016 Financial Results, Stability of Diversified Portfolio, Progress on 2016 Strategic Priorities and Reduced Leverage

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Nov. 9, 2016) - Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust ("Northview" or the "REIT") (TSX:NVU.UN), today announced financial results for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2016. Diluted funds from operations ("FFO") per unit was $0.64 for the three months ended September 30, 2016, compared to $0.68 in the third quarter of 2015. Diluted FFO per unit was $0.60 excluding Non-recurring Items. Diluted FFO payout ratio was 63.5% for Q3 2016, or 67.6% excluding Non-recurring Items.

Todd Cook, President and CEO, commented, "Our stable markets in Ontario, Northern Canada and Atlantic Canada are performing as expected, which helped us achieve higher overall occupancy compared to the prior quarter. For 2016, the diversification from the 2015 Transaction and the stability from our Northern markets have partially offset the lower financial results from Western Canada. We remain focused on the execution of our 2016 strategic priorities including value creation initiatives and organic growth within the portfolio."

Mr. Cook concluded, "Our 261 unit development in Calgary is on time and on budget with occupancy commencing in the fourth quarter. The equity offering completed on October 31, 2016, in combination with our divesture of non-core assets, accelerates our leverage reduction plans and gives us more financial flexibility to pursue growth opportunities in 2017."

Financial Performance Highlights

(thousands of dollars, except per unit amounts) Three months ended September 30 Nine months ended September 30
2016 2015 Change 2016 2015 Change
Net operating income 50,213 30,965 62 % 141,526 87,346 62 %
NOI margin 60.1 % 63.7 % (6 %) 56.4 % 59.5 % (5 %)
FFO - diluted 34,229 21,561 59 % 91,905 58,462 57 %
Excluding Non-recurring Items:
FFO - diluted(i) 32,189 21,561 49 % 88,336 58,462 51 %
FFO per Trust Unit - diluted $0.60 $0.68 (12 %) $1.66 $1.84 (10 %)
Distributions per Trust Unit(ii) $0.41 $0.41 - $1.22 $1.22 -
Net operating income ("NOI") and FFO are considered non-GAAP measures and do not have any standardized meaning as prescribed by generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"). See "Non-GAAP and Additional GAAP Measures" disclosure below.
(i) Non-recurring Items in the three months ended September 30, 2016, include $2.0 million of insurance proceeds received in the period. Non-recurring Items in the nine months ended September 30, 2016, include $6.7 million of insurance proceeds received in the period, partially offset by $1.6 million of revenue loss and $1.6 million of incremental costs relating to the Fort McMurray wildfires incurred in the period.
(ii) Trust Unit refers to the publicly traded Northview Trust Unit and the Class B LP Unit. Trust Unitholders refer to the publicly traded Northview Trust Unitholders and the Class B LP Unitholders.

Summary of 2016 Third Quarter

Funds From Operations

Diluted FFO per unit of $0.64 for the three months ended September 30, 2016, compared to $0.68 in the third quarter of 2015. Diluted FFO per unit was $0.60, excluding Non-recurring Items. The decrease in FFO on a per unit basis in the three and nine months ended September 30, 2016, was driven primarily by lower operating performance in natural resource based markets and higher interest expense from additional mortgages. Partially offsetting the decline was same door NOI growth from Northern Canada and contributions from acquisitions and developments, including the 2015 Transaction.

Diversified Portfolio Provided Financial Stability

Northview's relative exposure to resource markets has been significantly reduced as a result of expansion into Ontario and Atlantic Canada through the 2015 Transaction. For the nine months ended September 30, 2016, NOI from Western Canada is 22% of total NOI, compared to 40% of total NOI for the same period of 2015.

Improved Occupancy

Multi-family residential portfolio occupancy of 91.1%, slightly improved from 90.8% in Q2 2016. The Ontario, Northern Canada and Atlantic Canada regions, along with southern British Columbia operations, maintained stable high occupancy performance consistent with the three months ended June 30, 2016. These regions continue to offset the poor economic conditions throughout northeastern British Columbia and most of Alberta.

Stronger Balance Sheet

The $74.8 million equity offering that closed on October 31, 2016, accelerates management's strategy to reduce leverage, and provides flexibility for ongoing development and acquisition opportunities. The net proceeds from the equity offering were used in part to repay $25 million of the credit facilities, which were used to fund the equity component of developments in Airdrie, AB, Calgary, AB, and Cambridge Bay, NU.

As of September 30, 2016, Northview has completed $44.9 million of non-core asset sales with an additional $43.5 million in dispositions under contract. As at September 30, 2016, the debt to gross book value was 59.8%, compared to 60.2% at June 30, 2016. The equity offering and the non-core asset sales completed and under contract after September 30, 2016, further reduce debt to gross book value by approximately 3%.

Growth through Development

The 140 unit development in Airdrie, AB, completed in March 2016 is currently 95% leased. The first two buildings of the Calgary, AB, development of 261 units were completed and occupancy commenced in the fourth quarter of 2016. During the third quarter of 2016, Northview continued the development of 36 units in Cambridge Bay, NU, with occupancy expected in the second quarter of 2017.

Progressing on 2016 Strategic Priorities

Northview's 2016 strategic priorities include the continued execution of the strategic value creation initiatives. Overall, the progress made on the value creation initiatives in the third quarter of 2016 is on target with management's expectations

There were 209 fully renovated units completed as of the end of the third quarter of 2016, and approximately 52 are expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2016. The average return on capital investment for leased units is consistent with management's expectations.

On April 1, 2016, Northview internalized the management of approximately 7,600 units in Ontario. Management has realized cost savings of approximately $1.1 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2016, which is consistent with management's expectations. The internalization of the remaining 5,150 units in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, and Ontario is expected to be completed in 2017.

Lower Interest Costs

Northview monitors interest rates to identify opportunities for the reduction of its weighted average interest rate. During the three months ended September 30, 2016, Northview completed $59.7 million in mortgage refinancing with a weighted average interest rate of 2.27% and a term to maturity of 10.2 years. The lower weighted average interest on mortgage refinancing reduced Northview's weighted average interest rate on mortgage debt at September 30, 2016, to 3.24%, compared to 3.33% at December 31, 2015.

Financial Statements

Northview's condensed consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto and Management's Discussion and Analysis for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2016, can be found on Northview's website at www.northviewreit.com or www.sedar.com.

Cautionary/Forward-Looking Statements

This media release contains forward‐looking statements relating to execution of our 2016 strategic priorities, including value creation initiatives and organic growth within our portfolio, development and acquisition opportunities, closing of $43.5 million of non-core asset dispositions under contract, completion and occupancy of development projects in Calgary, AB, and Cambridge Bay, NU, completion of approximately 52 unit renovations in the fourth quarter of 2016, internalization of 5,150 units in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, and Ontario in 2017, and opportunities for the reduction of weighted average interest rates. These statements are not guarantees of future events, performance or results and will not necessarily be accurate indications of whether, or the times at which, such events, performance or results will be achieved.

Forward‐looking statements are based on information available at the time they are made, underlying estimates and assumptions made by management and management's good faith belief with respect to future events, performance and results, and are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties surrounding future expectations generally, which could cause actual results to differ materially from what is currently expected. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, risks related to: real property ownership; availability of cash flow and mortgage financing; demand for rental accommodation and commercial space; natural resource prices; development and construction risks; reliance on key personnel; concentration of tenants; capital requirements; interest rate risk; credit risk; liquidity risk; general uninsured losses; government regulation; environmental risk; utility costs; potential conflicts of interest; integration of acquired properties; income tax related risk factors; and other risk factors more particularly described in the most recent Annual Information Form available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Additional risks and uncertainties not presently known to Northview or that Northview currently believes to be less significant may also adversely affect Northview.

Readers are cautioned that the above list of factors is not exhaustive and that should certain risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying estimates or assumptions prove incorrect, actual events, performance and results may vary significantly from those expected. There can be no assurance that the actual results, performance, events or activities anticipated by Northview will be realized or, even if substantially realized, that they will have the expected consequences to, or effect on, Northview. Readers, therefore, should not place undue importance on forward‐looking information. Further, forward‐looking statements speak only as of the date on which such statements are made. Northview disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward‐looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required under applicable securities laws.

Non-GAAP and Additional GAAP Measures

Certain measures in this media release do not have any standardized meaning as prescribed by GAAP and, therefore, are considered non-GAAP measures. These measures are provided to enhance the reader's overall understanding of our current financial condition. They are included to provide investors and management with an alternative method for assessing our operating results in a manner that is focused on the performance of our ongoing operations and to provide a more consistent basis for comparison between periods. These measures include widely accepted measures of performance for Canadian real estate investment trusts; however, the measures are not defined by GAAP. In addition, these measures are subject to the interpretation of definitions by the preparers of financial statements and may not be applied consistently between real estate entities. Please refer to our third quarter 2016 Management's Discussion & Analysis for definitions of non-GAAP and additional GAAP measures, including NOI, FFO, debt to gross book value, debt service coverage and interest coverage.

Results Conference Call

Northview's conference call will take place on November 10, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. Mountain Time, 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Participating on the call will be Mr. Todd Cook (Chair), President and Chief Executive Officer, and Mr. Travis Beatty, Chief Financial Officer, and Mr. Leslie Veiner, Chief Operating Officer. Investors and analysts are invited to participate in the call by calling 1-866-223-7781 or 416-340-2218. Following the conclusion of the call, an instant replay will be available by calling 905-694-9451 or 1-800-408-3053, passcode 7577992. The recording will also be available on our website on November 14, 2016.

Corporate Profile

Northview is one of Canada's largest publicly traded multi-family REITs with a portfolio of approximately 24,000 quality residential suites in more than 60 markets across eight provinces and two territories. Northview's portfolio includes markets characterized by expanding populations, growing economies, high occupancy levels, and rising rents, which provides Northview the means to deliver stable and growing profitability and cash distributions to unitholders of Northview over time. The REIT currently trades on the TSX under the ticker symbol: NVU.UN. Additional information concerning Northview is available at www.sedar.com or www.northviewreit.com.

Contact Information

  • Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust
    Mr. Todd Cook
    President and CEO
    403-531-3610

    Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust
    Mr. Travis Beatty
    Chief Financial Officer
    403-531-3545

    Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust
    Mr. Leslie Veiner
    Chief Operating Officer
    (403) 531-0720