Cluttons advises Seera on UK project deal
Manama, October 31, 2012
Cluttons Capital Partners (CCP) has successfully advised Bahrain-based Seera Investment Bank in a structured financing transaction for a high-quality student accommodation scheme located in Aldgate, UK, and within Zone 1, a report said.
The development project has been specifically designed to cater to the growing international student market and will provide 310 premium quality student rooms in a new 18-storey tower together with 29 student loft apartments and 35,000 sq ft of commercial space, said the report in the Gulf Daily News, our sister newspaper.
Construction of the project is well advanced with completion due in March 2013.
"CCP as a Financial Services Authority regulated business is uniquely positioned to structure private equity deals on behalf of both investors and developers," Darren McGill, who led the transaction said.
"With our network of offices in the Middle and Far East we have access to a depth of overseas investors.
"With the continued lack of senior debt for development projects, the demand for higher levels of equity will continue to be strong for the foreseeable future and CCP is well-placed to provide developers the necessary equity to bridge this gap, he added.
"The bank's investment strategy is to maintain a diversified investment portfolio geographically and industry-wise, focusing mainly on defensive sectors underpinned by strong fundamental demand, and to avoid speculation driven sectors," Prateek Sharma, who led the transaction at Seera Investment Bank, said.
"This investment in the UK's student accommodation sector demonstrates Seera's commitment to invest in transactions with strong fundamentals and which are in line with the bank's investment strategy," he added.
"London has long been the most popular location for Middle Eastern overseas property investment and this remains true now, as it is perceived as a 'safe haven' for investment in the current economic climate," Cluttons in the Middle East chief executive Ian Gladwin, said.
"Demand is primarily from Bahrain and the UAE and is marked by an interest in diversifying investment portfolios.
"With 2.5 million students studying in the UK at the moment, 100,000 of whom are international, the strength of the student housing market cannot be underestimated.
"Cluttons is delighted to have advised on this recent scheme and is confident that many further opportunities will emerge in the marketplace," he added.-TradeArabia News Service