Profits up 33% at global property business Knight Frank

Property firm Knight Frank opened up offices in five new countries last year, the firm's annual report shows

Knight Frank
Knight Frank

Global property consultancy Knight Frank saw pre-tax profits rise 33% to £136.6m in a strong year which saw the firm open new offices in five countries.

The estate agency and commercial property specialist, which operates from 370 offices including a base on Newcastle Quayside, posted record revenue of £392.7m for the year ended March 2014, up 12% on the previous year’s £350m.

Pre-tax profit was also up to £136.6m and the year ended with a strong balance sheet and net cash balances of £141.7m, up from the previous period’s £105.1m.

Over the year the firm said it opened new offices in Ireland, Germany, South Africa, Taiwan and Malaysia

Highlights for the UK offices included the sale of all residential units of Grosvenor Crescent, London, on behalf of the Grosvenor Estate, as well as the sale of The St Botolph Building, also in London, for around £465m on behalf of Delancey and Ares.

Alistair Elliott, group chairman and senior partner of Knight Frank, said: “I am pleased to report such a strong set of results this year. Through a mixture of organic growth and trophy deals we have gone from strength to strength, enhancing our international footprint and client base.

“With the Scottish referendum now over, and as the general election approaches, the most helpful thing for the markets will be clarification on both housing policy and key infrastructure projects and the simplification of the planning process, not least by more resourcing.

“There is still a surfeit of investment capacity ready to target the global property markets; indeed, the signs are that such investment will continue – the challenge has shifted towards identifying where value can be best secured.

“Key global cities and alternative sectors will feature heavily on investors’ radars for the remainder of 2014 and the majority of 2015.

“Value for money will increasingly be found outside traditional centres, where higher yields can be achieved and we expect a growing trend towards development.

“I believe Knight Frank is poised for what will be the most exciting stage of growth in its recent history combining residential, commercial and international expertise with effective collaboration amongst our teams.”

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