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Charter Hall Office Plans Payout From U.S. Asset Sale in Stages

Charter Hall Office REIT, an Australian property trust, plans to distribute cash to shareholders in stages as it completes the sale of its U.S. properties.

The group will make as many as three payments to investors as it completes components of the U.S. sale, Chief Executive Officer Adrian Taylor said. Charter Hall today reported full-year net income of A$69.4 million ($72.7 million), compared with a loss of A$90.7 million a year ago.

“We’ve got 10 loans across the 14 assets,” Taylor said in a telephone interview today. “There will be a number of financial closes within that one transaction, so after each, we will repatriate the funds back to Australia, and the board will look to make payments to shareholders.”

Charter Hall Office agreed to sell its U.S. assets for A$1.71 billion to entities affiliated with Beacon Capital Partners, a week after it won investor support to retain Charter Hall Group as its manager. The property trust, which expects net proceeds of about A$575 million from the sale, now holds only Australian properties.

Charter Hall Office will pay a full-year dividend of 20.25 Australian cents, a 9.5 percent increase, it said today.

The trust’s shares climbed 3.7 percent to A$2.81 at the 4:10 p.m. close of trade in Sydney.

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