Blackstone and Hudson Pacific Properties are to build a film and television studio in the UK, expanding their Sunset Studios platform beyond the US for the first time.
The companies have acquired a 91-acre site in Hertfordshire for £120m (€140m) and expect to invest £700m to build what would would be one of the largest studio campuses in the world.
The announcement comes days after private-equity giant Blackstone and specialist US-listed real estate firm Hudson Pacific revealed plans to expand their Sunset Studios in California.
The latest project, which is still subject to planning permission, is expected to create over 4,500 permanent jobs and contribute £300m to the local economy of Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, located 17 miles north of central London.
Blackstone and Hudson Pacific, a Los Angeles-based office and studio owner and operator, already jointly own 3.5m sqft of studio space, including 35 active sound stages, onsite creative offices and development rights.
James Seppala, head of Blackstone Real Estate Europe, said the investment was “a continuation of our thematic investment focus and long-term conviction in media, entertainment and content creation”.
He added: “We are excited to expand our partnership with Hudson Pacific into the UK, and intend to deliver a world-class studio facility that will help ensure that the UK continues to be a premier destination for content production globally.”
Victor Coleman, chairman and CEO of Hudson Pacific, said: “With our expertise developing and operating state-of-the-art media campuses and Blackstone’s resources and existing market presence, we are confident this facility will be in high demand from leading content creators.
“We look forward to working with Broxbourne Council to ensure the project has a meaningful positive impact on the local community.”
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the investment was “excellent news for the UK’s film and TV industry, pumping hundreds of millions of pounds into the local economy and creating thousands of jobs for the people of Hertfordshire”.
He added: “The creative industries are at the heart of our plans to build back better. This will be a hub for both UK and international productions, showcasing home-grown talent on the global stage.”