British warehousing firm Segro rides surge in demand for quick delivery

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The path of a mobile gaming controller from a Chinese factory onto the shelves of a U.S. store in Pembroke

-British warehousing firm Segro said on Friday the growing popularity of rapid delivery services is fuelling strong demand across its markets after it reported a 20% jump in annual profit, sending its shares about 4% higher.

The boom in e-commerce during the pandemic is also helping warehouse operators like Segro remain relatively resilient in the face of rising inflationary pressures.

“We are seeing new names emerge in the space — rapid grocery delivery services and other ‘q-commerce’ businesses — and its impact is now being felt more widely across the portfolio, for example in our urban estates in Germany, France and Spain,” Segro said, using a term for “quick-commerce”.

In a sign of rising interest in the rapid delivery business, U.S. private equity giant Blackstone said this week it was leading a nearly $24 billion recapitalisation of Mileway, Europe’s largest operator of urban warehouses.

Segro said on Friday adjusted pre-tax profit jumped to 356 million pounds ($484.9 million) in 2021, from 296 million pounds a year earlier, while a measure that reflects the value of its buildings, called EPRA Net Tangible Assets, surged 40% to 1,137 pence per share.

($1 = 0.7342 pounds)

(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)