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Student accommodation

Laxfield Capital arranges GBP90m debt facility for Urbanest

Laxfield Capital, a UK commercial mortgage investment manager, has completed a GBP90m whole loan facility for student accommodation provider Urbanest. 

The deal was transacted for the Laxfield Lending Programme, which is backed by GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund.
The facility will be secured against Urbanest’s Hoxton scheme and its soon to be completed development on the Regent’s Canal, Urbanest St Pancras. The facility represents up to 70 per cent loan to value across the two assets and is for a five-year term. The loan will be made available in two tranches; the first drawing immediately, with a second drawdown following the opening of the St Pancras scheme.
The 221-bed Urbanest Hoxton scheme, located on East Road just to the north of Old Street roundabout, was completed in 2010 and has delivered consistently strong occupancy levels since opening.  The St Pancras scheme is to be delivered in time for the forthcoming academic year and will comprise 310 student accommodation beds and 40 residential apartments.
Urbanest was founded by Nick Porter in 2008 and is focused on the development, acquisition, ownership and operation of quality branded student accommodation in key cities within Australia and core ‘zone 1’ central London locations within the UK. 
Adam Slater, managing director of Laxfield Capital, says: “Urbanest is one of the best operators in its field and we are very pleased to have arranged this debt facility. Secured against two high quality central London assets, this is the third deal we have closed in the UK student accommodation sector this year, bringing the total debt we have originated in this asset class since the start of 2014 to in excess of GBP330m.”
Steve Grant, chief financial officer of Urbanest, says: “We are pleased to have closed this debt facility with Laxfield and GIC, building upon our recent successes in broadening our financing sources and reinforcing our strategy to deliver high quality schemes in central London locations with market-leading service levels.”

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