Round Hill Capital & NBK Capital acquire Dublin student accommodation development

Funds advised by Round Hill Capital, a global real estate investment, development and asset management firm, and NBK Capital (NBK) have acquired a 368-bed student accommodation development in The Liberties area of Dublin 8. 

The site was purchased from Summix, an urban mixed-use regeneration project specialist, with whom Round Hill Capital plans to partner on additional student accommodation developments in Ireland.
 
The development, located on the former ‘Brewery Block’ site adjacent to Newmarket Square, will preserve protected structures and celebrate the heritage of the surrounding location. The new Henry J Lyons-designed building will integrate a five-storey red brick tower and the façade of the now derelict warehouses that currently occupy part of the site. The project has a gross development value of EUR85 million.
 
Construction of the new development will commence in July 2020 following the completion of demolition works. It will take two years, ready for occupation in September 2022 and in time for the 2022/23 academic year. 
 
The project will deliver much-needed student accommodation into a market where the Higher Education Authority estimated in 2015 that over 11,000 new student beds were needed by 2024.
 
The development is exceptionally well-located for access and transport links to third-level colleges, including Trinity College Dublin (TCD), University College Dublin (UCD) and Technological University Dublin (TUI). It will provide residents with high-quality services and amenities, including 24-hour security, 200Mbps Wi-Fi, 24/7 gym, a cinema room, bike storage, study areas, year-round events programmes and significant new landscaped outdoor spaces.
 
Nido Student will manage the development, an established operational platform and brand for European student accommodation. Nido provides a home, lifestyle and experience which supports students’ success and helps to build a real community.
 
This is Round Hill Capital’s third student accommodation investment in Ireland, following the acquisition of a 145-bed development on Farranlea Road in Cork in December 2018 which was delivered in a strategic planning partnership with Summix. Round Hill Capital has also invested in a 216-unit apartment development called Bridgefield in Santry, Dublin 9. The firm currently has under development over 7,000 apartments and student accommodation beds in the UK, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, the Netherlands and Ireland.
 
Round Hill Capital established its Irish office in 2018 and has significant capital to deploy into its strong and growing pipeline of investment opportunities in the local build-to-rent and purpose-built student accommodation sectors in Ireland and across Europe.
 
Michael Bickford, Founder and CEO at Round Hill Capital, says: “Round Hill Capital has an 18-year track record of successfully investing in, developing and operating residential and student accommodation assets across Europe and we are pleased to have acquired this prime 368-bed purpose-built student accommodation development project in Dublin, Ireland, which is well-located within the Newmarket regeneration area.
 
We recognise that areas of the student and residential housing markets in Ireland suffer from persisting structural supply constraints and we look forward to helping alleviate these pressures and significantly further expanding Round Hill Capital’s business in Ireland and across Europe.”
 
John Vaudin, Managing Director at Round Hill Capital (Ireland), says: “There is an acute need for more purpose-built student accommodation in the Irish market and this development in Dublin 8 will help to meet that need. We have designed an attractive new building that will complement its surroundings and regenerate a derelict location into a vibrant home for students. We will continue to build up a significant portfolio in Ireland, where we anticipate investing significant capital over the next five years.”
 
Faisal Al-Hamad, CEO of NBK Capital, says: “NBK Capital is pleased to partner with Round Hill Capital to fund student accommodation developments in Ireland.  Dublin is an attractive city with quality higher education institutes, and we are pleased to be able to play a part in developing and supporting the local and wider community.”
 
Brian Welsh, Chief Executive of Nido Student, says: “We are pleased to manage this fantastic new site in Dublin, as we continue to expand our presence in Ireland and across Europe.  Our expertise as a best in class accommodation provider and operator, supported by our focus on what students tell us they value most – personal wellbeing, design and technology, strong communities and sustainability – ideally positions us to deliver an unrivalled student experience in the Irish market.”
 
Niamh O’Connor, Partner at Summix, says: “We are delighted to partner with Round Hill Capital once more in addressing the undersupply of quality purpose-built student accommodation in Ireland whilst breathing new life into this iconic part of Dublin. We look forward to building on our successful track record in the region with our existing projects in Galway and our active pipeline of new opportunities across Ireland.”