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GPT Group Secures $800m New Funding

The GPT Group today announced it has secured commitments for three new bank bilateral facilities, totalling up to $800 million. In what is believed to be a first for the real estate sector in Australia, GPT has obtained a term of seven years on one of the bank facilities. This facility is for $300 million. A term of five years for the other two facilities has been achieved. All facilities will be in place by October 2010 when the first tranche of GPT’s bank syndicated facility matures. This tranche will not be refinanced. The facilities were put in place at very competitive margins, averaging just over 200 basis points, supporting the Group’s efforts to minimise its financing costs. The facilities are unsecured and have competitive undrawn line and establishment fees, indicating the ability of GPT, with its high quality assets, strong balance sheet and secure and stable cashflows, to obtain long term and well priced funding from Australia’s largest financial institutions. Up to $200 million of the total extends an existing bilateral facility maturing in September 2011. The facilities represent progress on a number of initiatives designed to deliver the Group’s strategic priorities for debt, including lengthening tenor and flattening GPT’s debt maturity profile. Michael O’Brien, Chief Financial Officer, said he was pleased with the terms achieved and the progress made to date in implementing the Capital Management strategy outlined in December last year. “We have improved the Group’s funding position and cost of funding and have extended the average duration of our debt facilities. The average term of our facilities will move from 2.5 years in October 2010 to 3.3 years post commencement of these facilities. These facilities also represent an important step in our strategy to manage the Group’s largest single expiry, in October 2012. Whilst our strategy is well progressed and we remain comfortable that the Group’s balance sheet is well positioned into the medium term, ongoing capital management initiatives will remain an important focus for the Group,” Mr O’Brien said.