New property lenders move to fill void left by reluctant banks

Kasmira Jefford
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NEW lenders rushing to provide funding to the commercial property market has helped fill the void left by the collapse of traditional bank finance, new research claimed today.

Property specialists DTZ said the global net debt funding gap has shrunk by 17 per cent to $117bn (£74bn) over the past six months as new debt providers such as insurers and pension funds step in to replace reluctant banks.

The UK in particular has seen a 55 per cent reduction in its net debt funding gap over the period.

This is well ahead of Europe as a whole, which saw a 20 per cent decline to $86bn compared with $107bn in May.

A weaker economic outlook and growing pressure from regulators on banks to step up their deleveraging has led to a more than doubling in Europe’s gross debt funding gap to a gross $190bn as banks struggle to refinance the legacy debt burden.

DTZ said while insurers are providing the most funding, it expects increased activity from debt funds and the launch of more corporate bonds

Hammerson, in September, raised €500m via the issue of a seven-year note with a coupon of only 2.75 per cent.

Other recent deals include insurer Legal & General’s maiden £121m loan in May to British student accommodation developer Unite.