Westfield’s focus on shareholder returns

Although Westfield’s (ASX: WDC) chairman Frank Lowy and his two executive sons have come under scrutiny in recent months for their hefty salaries, there is no doubt that one of the company’s primary focuses has been on returning value to shareholders.

Since the global financial crisis, the company has embarked on a mission to strengthen its portfolio by divesting in underperforming assets and using the funds to redevelop its more profitable stores. The funds have also been used to increase shareholder returns the funds have also been put towards repurchasing shares on a daily basis as well as increasing dividend payouts.

Since February 2012, the company has repurchased over 140 million shares, whilst there is still potential to repurchase a further 90 million.

Foolish takeaway

Although the company has already established itself as a powerhouse in the property and shopping centre sector, it still has significant growth potential ahead of it as it currently operates in just four countries around the world. At $11.34 per share and offering a 4.4% dividend yield, Westfield could well be worth a position in your portfolio.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article.

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