Engaging actively with our tenants on an individual basis, we are focusing on those who are experiencing cash flow difficulties as a result of lockdown measures across Europe. We have gained a detailed understanding of the financial and operating impact of the current crisis on each customer’s business and what support is in place (including Government financial support) to ensure they can manage during this period and continue to operate successfully thereafter. A period of uncertainty remains whilst lockdown continues so we are unable to provide any meaningful conclusions on this until normality returns.
We have continued to receive letting enquiries for our UK MLI portfolio through our online platform, albeit at a much-reduced level but still a positive to see. The majority of enquiries we do see are typically focused and urgent requirements with a higher rate of conversion into lettings. Despite all Stenprop staff working from home, we have completed 16 new UK MLI leases – many of which were completed entirely through our online leasing process. These have aggregated to £474,000 per annum of new headline rent over 112,500 sq ft of space. Our digital-first leasing strategy across our Industrials platform highlights that the initiatives we have been implementing are proving effective and are likely to lead to higher levels of demand in the long term. We continue to invest in the digital platform during this period and will provide more information on this in our Annual Report for the year ended 31 March 2020.
At close of business on 15 April 2020, we had received 73% of the total rent invoiced and due for the aggregate of the quarter commencing 25 March 2020 and the month commencing 1 April 2020, broken down as follows:
We are pleased to report that we have not made any redundancies or put any of our staff on furlough. With the aid of our cloud-based IT infrastructure, our entire workforce remains productive, vigilant, and fully engaged despite working from different locations. Our team remains vigilant and is ready to support businesses or organisations contributing to the efforts in the UK or Germany to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. We have supplied to the NHS a list of all available units in our portfolio should they need space to store or distribute equipment and we have recently completed a short-term, rent-free letting to a food bank charity in Cardiff which has been supplying meals to NHS staff in the city.
As a company we remain confident that we are well placed to respond to the challenges of Covid-19. The duration of the crisis remains uncertain and we understand the financial impact this will have on the business remains difficult to predict. However, Stenprop remains a financially sound business with a capital structure and operating platform which is well placed to deal with a prolonged period of uncertainty and ultimately address, resolve and move on from the current challenges when the time comes.