Mace’s Develop business, part of the international consultancy and construction company, has completed the sale of part of its student accommodation portfolio to Ares Generation, a joint venture between a fund managed by the Real Estate Group of Ares Management Corporation (“Ares”) and Generation Partners LLP (“Generation”). This is the first acquisition of student accommodation in the UK for the Ares Generation joint venture.
The assets sold include the Depot in Exeter and West Wing in Cardiff, totalling 1,359 student beds provided in a wide range of formats from 12-bed cluster rooms through to duplex studios and 1-bed flats.
The buildings were completed in phases over the past 18 months with the final phase at Exeter being delivered by Mace’s construction division through a Construction Management arrangement supported by Mace’s local Exeter consultancy team.
Having recently announced achieving net zero carbon in 2020, Mace will use this boost to its balance sheet to continue to invest in and deliver sustainable, carbon neutral projects.
As a developer, Mace has recently completed construction on the final phase of Greenwich Square, a mixed-use scheme in London, offering 686 new residential homes, together with new community, retail and leisure facilities. In 2020, Mace gained planning approval for a £500m regeneration of Stevenage Town Centre.
Craig McPhail of Montagu Evans advised Mace Develop in the transaction.
Richard Bienfait, Chief Financial Officer of Mace, said:
“We are very proud to have developed two high quality student accommodation facilities in the heart of the Russell Group university cities of Cardiff and Exeter. We are delighted to have secured a great value transaction with Ares and Generation. This transaction allows Mace Develop to focus on other new and exciting opportunities one of which is the regeneration of Stevenage Town Centre.”
Wilson Lamont, Partner and Co-Head of European Real Estate Equity at Ares and Alan Artus, Co-Founder of Generation Partners LLP commented:
“We are delighted to have concluded this transaction with Mace to acquire two high-quality buildings in the first transaction undertaken by the Ares Generation joint venture.”