PineBridge acquires Dubai school property
Manama, November 6, 2013
Bahrain-based PineBridge Investments Middle East (PBME), a global multi-asset class investment manager, has acquired a UAE-based school campus operated by global education services provider GEMS Education in a sale and lease-back transaction.
Under the terms of the agreement, GEMS Education will lease the school campus for a term of over 20 years. There will be no change to the school’s operations, and faculty, management and support staff will remain the same with no disruption to pupils or their studies, said a statement from PBME.
The move is part of PineBridge’s regional strategy to acquire income-generating real estate assets in the GCC. With its regional headquarters in Bahrain, PBME covers the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey region.
“We see significant regional demand for proprietary real estate and private equity investments. Our platform allows us to provide one source of capital to fund our partners’ growth, as well as unlock value in their real estate holdings,” remarked
Commenting on the deal, Wael Aburida, the chief investment officer at PBME, said: “We will continue to source real estate investments with long-term leases in social infrastructure, such as education and healthcare as well as logistics and community retail. These will help our investors achieve their investment goals, while supporting regional economic growth.”
Nick Guest, the chief financial officer at GEMS Education, said this was a continuation of its strategy for growth as the world’s leading provider of quality private sector education.
“GEMS continued to build new schools during the global economic downturn, allowing it to add capacity which is now much needed in the UAE. We continue to invest in high quality new schools; however, a natural solution to allow further growth is to partner with property funds and investors such as PineBridge who recognize the importance and stable nature of the education sector within the UAE,” he added.
An independent asset manager with over 60 years of experience, PineBridge Investments Middle East manages over $69.1 billion in AUM globally as of 30 September 2013. It was advised by King & Spalding on the sale and lease-back transaction.-TradeArabia News Service