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Sovran earnings jump 31 percent as its self storage facilities fill up

Rising occupancy levels and higher rents helped Sovran Self Storage’s second-quarter earnings jump by 31 percent, topping analyst forecasts.

The Amherst-based company, which runs more than 500 Uncle Bob’s self storage facilities in 25 states primarily in the eastern half of the country, also hiked its earnings outlook for the full year, saying it now expects profits to rise by 19 percent during 2015 – better than the 18 percent increase it forecast in April – and exceed the growth that analysts currently are forecasting.

Sovran said the improvement was due to a more than 1 percentage point rise in occupancy levels, which averaged 92.1 percent during the quarter at stores open for at least a year. The strong demand allowed Sovran to push its rents higher by an average of 4 percent to $12.16 per square foot.

As a result, the company earned $43.4 million, or $1.22 per share, during the quarter, up from $33.1 million, or $1 per share, a year ago. Excluding acquisition expenses and other costs, Sovran’s profits improved to $44.2 million, or $1.24 per share, from $35.6 million, or $1.08 per share, a year earlier. That was 2 cents better than the $1.22 that analysts were expecting.

For the full year, Sovran said it expects to earn between $4.83 and $4.89 per share, up about 19 percent from $4.09 last year and better than the $4.76 per share that analysts currently are forecasting. Earnings during the current quarter are expected to range between $1.29 and $1.31 per share, better than the $1.25 per share consensus analyst forecast.