Lamar looks to become a Real Estate Investment Trust
As part of its second-quarter financial report released this morning, Baton Rouge-based Lamar Advertising Co. says it will ask its shareholders to approve changing the company into a Real Estate Investment Trust. Lamar says it will also seek a ruling from the Internal Revenue Service on whether it can make the change. A REIT is a tax designation for a corporate entity that invests in real estate. The designation is generally sought to reduce or eliminate corporate tax. In return, REITs are required to distribute a minimum of 90% of their taxable income into the hands of investors. They can be publicly or privately held, and public REITs may be listed on public stock exchanges. "If we proceed with a REIT election, we would likely make the election for the taxable year beginning January 1, 2014, during 2013, subject to the approval of our board of directors," reads Lamar's quarterly report. "There is no certainty as to the timing of a REIT election or whether we will ultimately decide to make a REIT election." Meanwhile, Lamar turned a profit of $13.9 million, or 15 cents per share, in the second quarter—compared to $11.4 million, or 12 cents per share, a year earlier. Lamar's revenue of $304.9 million is a 3.9% increase over the same period last year.
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