Our 2017-18 annual report is out now. It's been another year of strong financial and operational performance that will enable us to continue to invest in its existing homes, build thousands of new homes and deliver positive social outcomes.
In the 2017-18 financial year, Luminus Group, a Cambridgeshire-based housing association, joined Places for People boosting our affordable housing operations and increasing the total number of homes owned or managed to 198,640. Millwood Designer Homes also became a subsidiary of the Group in November 2017 further enhancing our house building capabilities.
The Group’s operating profit increased from £158.7m to £184.5m. Profit before tax increased from £119.7m to £130.2m, which included £45.2m from the merger with Luminus. A similar profit of £41.4m was posted in the prior year due to the merger with Derwent Living, therefore the underlying Group profit before tax increased by £6.7m to £85.0m.
The Group ended the year in a strong liquidity position with £679.4m of cash and undrawn facilities. This was following a tender for £150m of secured debt and concurrent issue of £250m of unsecured debt, the Group’s inaugural AUD150m Australian note issuance and HKD700m private placements.
We increased the number of homes built or acquired by 38% from 1,519 in 2016-17 to 2,097 in 2017-18, including 1,032 new affordable homes. At 31 March 2018, a further 2,507 homes were under construction. At the same time, we invested £103.8m in improving and maintaining its existing homes.
Our investment and operations generated £76m of social value in the communities it operates in. We supported 675 people into employment, 1,494 into training or learning, and involved over 4,500 young people in community activities, as well as employing more than 900 apprentices across the Group.
David Cowans, Group Chief Executive of Places for People, said: “We have achieved a strong set of results which will enable us to continue to deliver our ambitious investment and development plans.
“Our not-for-dividend model means that all profits are reinvested back into homes and communities to help us to achieve our vision of creating places that work for everyone. Our business model gives us an agility to respond to market conditions in order to protect and increase our assets and revenue, which in turn enables us to reinvest more.
“With the addition of Luminus Group and Millwood Designer Homes to the Group, we have increased our asset base and the number of homes we manage, as well as enhancing our house building capacity.”
Places for People’s 2018 annual report is available to view and download at www.placesforpeople.co.uk/annualreport.
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