QuadReal Property has invested C$1bn (€640m) to buy a majority stake in a UK rental housing portfolio owned by Realstar.

Realstar said the C$44.2bn real estate arm of British Columbia Investment Management Corporation has invested the capital to buy the interest in the portfolio comprising seven assets in London and one in Manchester.

Four of these assets form part of Realstar’s UNCLE branded rental housing portfolio, including its 45-story tower in the centre of Elephant & Castle, as well its Stockwell, New Cross and Manchester buildings.

The latest deal strengthens Realstar and QuadReal’s ongoing investment relationship. The pair previously partnered on six other UNCLE developments in London, bringing its residential rental portfolio under the UNCLE brand to 10 locations, representing nearly $2.5bn assets.

Realstar said QuadReal is also acquiring an ownership stake in Realstar’s UK management business which owns the UK rights to the UNCLE brand.

Ryan Prince, CEO and founder of UNCLE, said: “We have worked in partnership with QuadReal and its clients as a trusted business ally for many years. However, under this new relationship, they will become partners alongside us in the UK on both the brand and operations, as well as the bricks and mortar.

”This joined-up approach will be a real advantage in achieving our goal to double (and hopefully triple) the size of the UNCLE portfolio over the next five years.”

Jay Kwan, QuadReal’s managing director of Europe, said: “This transaction represents the natural evolution of QuadReal’s investment strategy in Europe. 

“We are deepening our exposure to a sector we believe in, and more solidly aligning ourselves with a world-class partner on the operating side of the business. We are well-positioned to continue expanding UNCLE’s reach in the UK.”

Jonathan Dubois-Phillips, QuadReal’s International President, said: “QuadReal’s global real estate portfolio now includes over 50,000 residential rental suites. This commitment reflects our strong conviction to the asset class.

“We continue to see opportunities to improve the communities we invest in – by addressing the fundamental lack of professionally managed rental accommodation.”

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