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Unite Students secures planning consent for new sites in Birmingham and Sheffield – 26 January 2017

26 January 2017

Unite Students, the UK’s leading developer and manager of student accommodation, has secured planning consent for two city centre developments in Birmingham and Sheffield totalling 1,186 student bedrooms. These latest consents take the total development pipeline to be delivered in the next three years to 6,500 beds, providing further visibility to our earnings growth outlook.

The new scheme at International House in Birmingham is located alongside Unite Students’ existing development ‘The Heights’, which is fully let for the 2016/17 academic year. The new scheme will help increase our presence in a key market.

In Sheffield, St Vincent’s Church is a dilapidated former church located next to the University of Sheffield’s main city centre campus. The approved development will include the full refurbishment of the former church and its grounds into a new common room and accommodation for 600 new student beds.

Both schemes are expected to be open for the 2018/19 academic year and have a combined £75 million development cost, including land. The schemes will be funded by internally generated sources and are expected to achieve a yield on cost of 8% in line with our targets and to contribute 2p per share to EPRA earnings once complete. The schemes will continue to drive the Group’s earnings visibility and NAV growth.

Richard Simpson, Group Property Director for Unite Group, commented: 

“We are delighted to have secured planning consent for these important sites in two of the UK’s most popular University cities. These cluster led developments will help to meet the strong demand for student accommodation in these cities and provide a safe and secure home for students.

“We will continue to progress our secured pipeline which remains focused on regional locations with strong student markets.”

For further information, please contact:

Unite Students 
Joe Lister, Chief Financial Officer
Paul Richmond, Corporate Affairs Director    
Tel: +44 117 302 7005

Bell Pottinger 
Victoria Geoghegan
Nick Lambert 
Elizabeth Snow    
Tel: +44 20 3772 2562