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CAIRO, April 22 Egyptian property developer
SODIC swung to a net loss of 447.1 million Egyptian
pounds ($64 million) last year, due to one-off items including a
write-down on its investments in Syria, managing director Ahmed
Badrawi told Reuters on Tuesday.
The company had made a net profit of 257 million pounds a
year earlier. Revenue in 2013 reached 1.324 billion pounds, a 7
percent decrease on the year before.
"Operationally we had a very strong 2013 but that is not
reflected in the actual figures reported because of these
one-off items," Badrawi said.
The one-off items included a non-cash charge of 478 million
pounds related to the firm's investments in war-torn Syria.
"Our board decided it would be prudent for us to take an
impairment for our investments in Syria ... On our books, it was
reduced to zero. So if anything negative happens in the future
we wouldn't be impacted and if something positive happens it
would be a bonus," Badrawi said.
Before accounting for the one-off items, SODIC's normalised
net income reached 229 million pounds, the firm said.
Egypt's real estate industry was thrown into turmoil after a
popular uprising ousted President Honsi Mubarak in 2011, hitting
demand for high-end property.
Last week SODIC ended a dispute with Egypt's government,
agreeing to pay 900 million pounds over seven years after a
revaluation of its Eastown development project in Cairo.
The Eastown project in New Cairo is twice the size of
London's 97-acre Canary Wharf district and includes offices,
shops and homes. The government had sought to revoke SODIC's
rights over the land because of delays.
"The 900 million will reduce the profitability of Eastown a
little but we'll try to make up for that by looking at the
project economics, increasing densities, increasing efficiency
and if necessary increasing prices," he said.
The firm had already paid 100 million pounds from the
settlement and will pay the remainder in the coming six years in
semi-annual instalments, Badrawi said.
($1 = 6.9902 Egyptian Pounds)
(Reporting by Asma Alsharif; Editing by Erica Billingham and