Unite fund buys student digs for £271m

Kasmira Jefford
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UNITE’S UK Student Accommodation Fund (USAF) said yesterday that it has snapped up a 2,100-bed portfolio for £271m in its first deal since its £306m fundraising last month.

The portfolio, which was acquired from Ahli United Bank, includes eight sites located across seven prime student accommodation markets including London, Glasgow, Leeds and Birmingham.

FTSE 250 developer Unite set up USAF in 2006 to buy and operate student properties and has a 20 per cent stake in the business.

The deal has boosted the fund’s value by 16 per cent from £1.64bn to to £1.9bn across 76 properties.

Unite chief executive Mark Allan said: “Following its recent capital raising, we are delighted that USAF has been able to complete the acquisition of one of the highest quality portfolios in the market.

“The portfolio is highly complementary to USAF’s existing portfolio and we see real opportunities to drive additional value through the introduction of our brand and operating platform as well as specific asset management opportunities,” he added.