Dublin listed property investment fund Hibernia REIT has reported pre-tax profits of €70.6m for the six months to the end of September, up 118% on the same time last year.

Hibernia REIT has declared an interim dividend of 1.1 cent per share, up over 46% on the 0.75 cent per share last year.

The company said its net asset value per share of 155.3 cent is up over 6% since its full year results in March, while the value of its investment property portfolio value rose by over 5% to €1.266 billion in the six month period.

Meanwhile, its net rental income jumped by 31% to €21.9m from the same time last year.

The period under review predated the trebling of stamp duty from 2% to 6% on commercial transactions announced in the Budget. Hibernia estimates that it would have reduced its portfolio value and pre-tax profit by €53.7m.

The company's chief executive Kevin Nowlan said that demand from domestic and international occupiers for office space in Dublin remains very strong.

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"2017 is likely to be close to a record year for office take-up and we have started to see some Brexit-related lettings occurring," he said. 

"In the longer term Dublin is expected to have one of the highest growth rates in office-based employment among major European cities, which bodes well for future tenant demand," he added.

"We remain optimistic about our prospects - our portfolio is rich in opportunity, we expect to recycle capital and we have flexible, low-cost funding available to support further developments and acquisitions as appropriate," Mr Nowlan stated.

During the six month period, Hibernia completed its 1 Windmill Lane (1WML) development and as of September, the office building was 50% let to Informatica and Core Media.

Earlier this month, the group also completed the refurbishment of 57,000 sq ft of office space at Two Dockland Central on schedule and within budget. 

By September 30, Hibernia REIT said it had committed schemes underway at three properties which will deliver about 247,000 sq ft of new and refurbished Grade A office space by the end of next year. 

These are 2 Docklands Central, 1 Sir John Rogerson's Quay and Hanover Building, which is being renamed 2WLM. 

Shares in the company moved higher in Dublin trade today.