Carlyle Group will take control of Fairfield Partnership

Steve Dinneen
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CARLYLE Group plans to take a controlling stake in Fairfield Partnership, the regional housing developer that owns more than 1,000 sites in Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire.

The US private equity giant will pay an initial £17m, rising to £40m after an agreed investment of capital.

It will buy the stake from Fairview New Homes, which jointly owns the firm with Marchfield Developments.

Marchfield will retain a 20 per cent stake in the firm.

Carlyle Group declined to comment last night. Fairfield Partnership were unavailable for comment.

Fairfield works with landowners to develop greenfield and brownfield sites, either leasing or buying the land and promoting it for sale.

The acquisition will be seen as a positive reflection on the state of the UK housing market just days after it recorded its first annual decline in a year.

The three months to November, fell 0.7 per cent compared with a year ago – the first decline on this measure since November 2009.

That compared with gains of 1.8 per cent on the month and a three-month annual rise of 1.2 per cent in October.

Analysts say the figures reinforce the view that house prices will remain soft in 2011.