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Westfield ploughs profits into UK shopping centres

Shopping centre owner Westfield is ploughing ahead with expansion across the UK after posting profits of $2.3bn (£1.65bn).

Westfield London

Westfield London

The Australian company, which owns 34 shopping centres across the UK and US, said like-for-like net operating income rose 3.9% for the 12 months to 31 December 2015.

It has $29bn (£20.8bn) of assets under management and a further $3.7bn (£2.6bn) of developments under way.

During the period it embarked on projects in the UK including a £600m redevelopment of Westfield London in White City. Westfield is increasing the 1.8m sq ft centre to 2.6m sq ft, anchored by a new John Lewis department store, making it the largest shopping centre in Europe when it is complete in 2018.

In the UK and US Westfield completed around $1bn (£700m) of schemes last year, including Westfield Bradford, which opened in November.

Work with retail landlord Hammerson to redevelop the Whitgift Centre in Croydon into a £1bn complex is expected to begin in 2017.

“We are well on our way in executing our strategy to create and operate flagship assets in leading markets,” said Westfield Corporation co-chief executives, Peter Lowy and Steven Lowy.

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