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Far East Orchard buys third student accommodation property in Bristol

Far East Orchard - bristol student accomm - FEO.JPG
The freehold property is operating at near full occupancy for the current academic year 2020/21.

REAL estate firm Far East Orchard has acquired its third purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) property in Bristol for £39.3 million (S$70.5 million).

The freehold property, Kings Square Studio, has a total of 301 beds, the majority of them being studios. It is operating at near full occupancy for the current academic year 2020/21.

The group said the acquisition is in line with its strategy of building a lodging platform and brings its total portfolio to 3,561 beds across 12 properties in the UK.

It added that Bristol is a strong regional city for PBSA, with two major universities and a sizeable full-time student population. Following the 2019 acquisitions of 166-bed St Lawrence House and 133-bed Harbour Court, the group's footprint in the city will be expanded to 600 beds.

Kings Square Studio is near the city centre and the universities. Originally an office building, it underwent two phases of renovations in 2009 and 2013 to convert it into student-accommodation premises.

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It now provides accommodation to students at a number of institutions including University of Bristol and University of the West of England. The property will be managed by the facility manager of the group's existing PBSA properties in Bristol.

Chief executive officer Alan Tang said that the PBSA business is a key pillar of the firm's recurring income streams. "We intend to continue building on this strategy, to take advantage of the counter-cyclical nature of student accommodation assets by building our portfolio in the UK, focusing on cities with high-tariff universities and strong student growth," he said.

The counter closed at S$1.05 on Thursday, down S$0.01 or 0.94 per cent.

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