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Unibail-Rodamco's retail portfolio drives H1 rental income growth

CEOChristophe Cuvillier said the company's retail operations proved "veryresilient" in the first half of 2016 in spite of the terrorist attacks inParis and Brussels and a "subdued" economic environment.

Thecompany's net rental income amounted to €781 million in the first half, up 7.7%from €725 million ayear ago.

Thecompany's recurring EPS increased 8.2% year over year to €5.81 from €5.37, or 13.5%when compared with the rebased €5.12 EPS in the first half of 2015.

TheFrench group said that the recurring EPS increase was due to the "robustrental growth" of its shopping centers portfolio, which contributed €643million to the company's net rental income, up 10.6% from the year-ago period.

Asat June 30, the company's pipeline of development projects is worth €7.9billion, while its portfolio value was up 4.1% to about €39.3 billion from2015-end.

Unibail-Rodamcoalso recorded a further decrease in cost of debt to a record low of 1.7% as atthe end of June, from 2.2% in 2015.

Lookingahead, the company expects to generate a recurring EPS of around €11.20 for full year 2016, whichis the top end of its guidance range of between €11.00 and €11.20.