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SPH commences £10.6m asset enhancement initiative on UK student accommodation

Singapore

SINGAPORE Press Holdings (SPH) has commenced a £10.6 million (S$18.9 million) asset enhancement initiative to refurbish nine properties in its UK student accommodation portfolio.

This comes as the media group looks to meet the changing accommodation type preferences, as well as "maintain their competitive edge over other properties in the area".

The refurbishment efforts will focus on assets under the Capitol Students brand acquired in September 2018, located in cities and towns with a predominantly domestic UK student population that is expected to grow, said the group on Wednesday.

About £5.37 million has been allocated to the conversion of 112 non-en-suite rooms to studios at St Teresa House in Plymouth to meet the demand of students who "prefer to have their own private space and access to high-end features".

The remaining funds will focus on refurbishments of rooms and selected common areas for eight assets in Huddersfield, Plymouth, Sheffield, Bristol and Birmingham. This is so the properties can remain competitive and also to ensure consistent quality across the assets.

William Lee, technical director of SPH's student accommodation portfolio, said: "The asset enhancement initiatives will strengthen our presence in the locations where we have built up close relationships with the local universities."

SPH's UK student accommodation portfolio is made up of a total of 7,442 beds across 17 locations including major cities such as Birmingham, Edinburgh, London, York as well as the key university towns of Cambridge and Oxford.

SPH shares closed flat at S$1.87 on Wednesday.