Hines has acquired a 30,000sqm portfolio of eight build-to-rent development sites in France on behalf of its core European real estate fund.

The international real estate firm said its Hines Pan-European Core Fund (HECF) fund will forward fund the development of 500 units of living space across five locations in Paris and three regional cities in France.

Kaufmann & Broad will lead the development of the properties.

Peter Epping, senior managing director and HECF fund manager at Hines, said: “While we continue to increase the fund’s exposure to the logistics sector, this acquisition represents a key milestone in the execution of our strategy to diversify into the living sector.

”The BTR sector is a nascent sector in France so we are pleased to be early entrants to a market which is benefiting from strong demographics and other fundamentals, and where we believe there is elevated demand for high quality, well-located flexible accommodation, particularly from young professionals.”

Xavier Musseau, senior managing director and country head of France at Hines, said: “This acquisition marks our first foray into the BTR sector in France and builds on our other recent successful transactions. We’re excited to be entering the burgeoning living sector and have a strong team on the ground in France.

“In addition, we’re delighted to be partnering with one of the country’s best known and highest regarded residential developers in Kaufmann & Broad to deliver these exciting projects.”

Nordine Hachemi, president and CEO of Kaufman-Broad, said: “This first agreement with Hines in France illustrates our desire to support public and private institutional investors, both French and international, toward rental housing and to establish a quality relationship with them over time.

”Our share of sales to institutional investors is increasing and we expect this trend to continue. The institutional rental investment market should be increasingly strong to meet the growing housing needs in the country and we will continue to support institutional investors to develop their rental offer in France, especially in our busiest cities where there are supply constraints.”

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