On February 12, 2020, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield announced its 2019 results and proposed adividend of €10.80 per stapled share. There were only a limited number of COVID-19 cases outside China at that time. Since then, the COVID-19 pandemic has evolved significantly and at a very rapid pace.
Governments and business are employing stringent measures to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. There is currently a lack of clarity about whether further measures will be deployed and significant uncertainty about the duration and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the operations of the Group.
Consequently, URW announces that:
- It withdraws its 2020 AREPS guidance and expects to provide an update on its guidance when it can reliably estimate the duration, severity, and consequences of the current situation;
- To satisfy its REIT dividend distribution obligations, it will pay an interim cash dividend of €5.40 per share, as planned, on March 26, 2020 (ex-dividend date March 24, 2020). This payment will cover the Group’s distributionobligations for 2019; and
- Taking a prudent view of the uncertainties about the duration and impact of the crisis, and in order to furtheraugment the Group’s strong liquidity position, it has decided to cancel payment of the final dividend of €5.40per share. URW continues to focus on the strength of its asset portfolio, its capital allocation priorities and the preservation of its strong liquidity position, in addition to the health and safety of its employees and communities. These are unprecedented times and URW is taking all necessary measures to address these challenges in the best possible manner and prepare the Group for the future.