Taylor Wimpey raises more than £500m to buy new land
Housebuilder Taylor Wimpey has raised £522 million from investors as it seeks to take advantage of a lockdown-related easing of market competition for development land.
The FTSE 100 firm has sold 355 million new shares at £1.45 each to raise £515m gross. A concurrent but separate offer to directors, employees and other retail investors raised another £7m.
Any taxpayer funds accepted from the UK Government’s furlough scheme will be returned, it added.
Taylor Wimpey said that the coronavirus pandemic resulted in smaller and medium-sized builders being constrained by “weaker balance sheets and reduced cashflows” adding that this created “short term opportunities to acquire land from a broad range of sources at attractive returns and prices below pre-COVID-19 levels”.
Terms have been agreed on 25 sites and the builder is in talks to acquire a further 60.
Chief executive Pete Redfern said: “We have built a strong and resilient business and invested in our people, processes and resources to deliver enhanced value to our stakeholders.
“We have taken decisive and early action to conserve cash and increase flexibility through the COVID-19 pandemic and we are now seeing a significant opportunity to invest in land at attractive prices.”
He added: “We have seen robust demand for our homes throughout the lockdown period and have been encouraged by the continued resilience of the housing market as we have returned to our developments. Our order book remains strong with a healthy increase in reservations in recent weeks.”