Downing and Pollen Street Capital’s newly launched UK real estate funding partnership has announced a £24.3m (€28.3m) co-funded deal.

The partnership has committed the development funding towards the construction of two purpose-built student apartment blocks in Canterbury, which will provide accommodation and facilities for just under 400 students.

Parik Chandra, partner and head of property finance at Downing, said: “The market for student accommodation is experiencing some challenges due to Covid and Brexit may also impact EU students studying in the UK. Nevertheless, the underlying dynamics of the UK student market remain strong.

“The undersupply of purpose-built student accommodation in cities across the UK is an ongoing issue which we aim to play our part in tackling by providing debt funding for projects of this kind. This deal is an excellent example as it involves an experienced developer committed to ensuring a high-quality build.”

Howard Garland, partner, Pollen Street Capital said: “We are pleased to have supported another development through our co-funding partnership with Downing and look forward to continuing to build this relationship.

“It is excellent to start to see the positive impact of our partnership in improving access to finance for SME developers around the UK.”

In December last year, investment manager Downing and private equity firm Pollen Street teamed up to provide finance for small to medium-sized UK housing developers and to encourage greater innovation and competition in the market. As part of the newly created venture, Pollen Street acquired approximately £30m of Downing’s existing loan book and is providing an additional funding line for future residential development finance and bridging deals for developers.

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