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Ibdar acquires prime student property in UK

MANAMA, November 2, 2016

Bahrain-based Ibdar Bank has announced the successful acquisition of a prime site in Southampton, UK, in order to develop a leading purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) by 2019.

The project site is located at Cumberland Place, one of the main commercial streets in Southampton’s city centre, and is close to the main universities of Southampton, said a statement from Ibdar.

The Class A development will provide accommodation for more than 200 students in a combination of one-, two- and three-bedroom modern studio apartments. The project is expected to be completed in time for the 2018-2019 academic year, it added.

Commenting on the acquisition, Ahmed Al Rayes, the acting chief executive officer of Ibdar Bank, said: "It is in line with our strategy to identify and invest in prime global real estate within the UK market, which is an area of strong and ongoing interest for the bank."

This latest transaction in student housing in the UK offers investors exposure to an alternative and resilient asset class, stated Al Rayes.

The bank has set up a $30-million joint venture for developing the PBSA project. It will be designed to meet the rising demand for higher quality student accommodation in the area by both local and international students, he added.

According to him, the bank is capitalising on the experience of leading UK-based developers who have strong track records within the student accommodation sector; having successfully delivered premium student accommodations throughout the UK.

Bassam Kameshki, the director of real estate, said: "The UK remains an investment destination of choice for GCC investors, and this deal in a defensive sector is expected to generate attractive returns."

"We have chosen Southampton as there is an undersupply of quality, PBSA schemes and a shortage of accommodation for college students, taking into consideration the growing student population and the ongoing expansion of universities in the Southampton area," he added.

Ibdar, a key player in the real estate, private equity, capital markets and investment advisory sector, was formed in 2013 when three Bahrain-based Islamic lenders - Elaf Bank, Capivest and Capital Management House - merged to become the third largest Islamic investment bank in the kingdom.

"Ibdar develops investment products and opportunities based on its in-depth understanding of the needs and appetite of investors, taking a well-considered and conservative approach to the selection, due diligence and acquisition of investments," remarked Al Rayes.

"When structuring the bank’s products and funds across our private equity and real estate business lines, we build on trends and market opportunities to ensure our clients find market attractive opportunities at all times," he added.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: UK | Ibdar | student property |

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