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Simon Property 4Q results increase 6 percent

February 3, 2012
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INDIANAPOLIS—Simon Property Group Inc., the nation's largest mall operator, said Friday a key metric climbed 6 percent in the final quarter of 2011, as higher rents helped revenue and occupancy rates improved.

The Indianapolis company said funds from operations, or FFO, increased to $678.9 million, or $1.91 per share, in the three months that ended Dec. 31. That compares to $638.7 million, or $1.80 per share, in the 2010 quarter.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet expected, on average, FFO of $1.90 per share.

Funds from operations adds items like amortization and depreciation to net income and is considered a key measure of strength for a real estate investment trust like Simon.

The company's net income climbed to $362.9 million, or $1.24 per share, from $217.9 million, or 74 cents per share, in the 2010 quarter.

Revenue rose nearly 5 percent to $1.17 billion.

Simon Property said average rent per square foot rose 4.4 percent in the quarter, and occupancy climbed to 94.8 percent from 94.5 percent. Total sales per square foot increased nearly 11 percent to $536.

For the full year, Simon reported FFO of $2.44 billion, or $6.89 per share. Revenue rose to $4.31 billion from $3.96 billion.

The company expects 2012 funds from operations to range between $7.20 and $7.30 per share. Analysts expect, on average, $7.28 per share.

The company said Friday it will increase its quarterly dividend to 95 cents per share from 90 cents.

Simon Property shares climbed 55 cents to $138 in premarket trading.

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