15 May 2019

Urban splash secures £55Million investment as housebuilder moves into UK

Urban splash secures £55Million investment as housebuilder moves into UK

Japan's biggest housebuilder is set to move into the UK housing market after striking a multimillion-pound deal that will see it work with Homes England and Castlefield-headquartered regeneration specialist Urban Splash to bring forward thousands of properties across England. The agreement will also see it invest £55m into Urban Splash.

Sekisui House – which builds its assets in factories and then ships them out to sites – is behind the £90m initiative, which has been facilitated by lead real estate and financial adviser JLL.

The House business of Urban Splash is expected to yield a huge number of homes using modern methods of construction. The £55m invested accounts for a 35 per cent equity stake.

A total of £22m has gone towards new equity, while £30m of equity and debt funding has come from the government's Home Building Fund, administered through Homes England.

Noel McKee, founder of We Buy Any Car, has also made a sizeable investment in the new partnership and will take an incremental 5 per cent stake.

Yoshihiro Nakai, president and representative director of Sekisui House, said: "Using modern methods of construction to build high quality homes with short build times is one of our company's great strengths. Our technology and know-how can help resolve pressing social issues in the UK, and I want to see us play our part effective immediately.

"These operations can also help bring vitality to UK regions, and we will work to make the strongest connections with the local communities."

Sir Edward Lister, chairman of Homes England, added: "When Homes England launched last year we said we'd disrupt the housing market to increase the pace of construction. By helping bring one of the world's largest and most innovative housebuilders to UK shores, we're putting our money where our mouth is."

Tom Bloxham MBE, chairman of Urban Splash, believes that there is a "real opportunity in the UK housebuilding industry".

"We hope to leverage our 25 years of placemaking experience and our recent investments into modular housing by bringing in new partners," he said.

"Having looked far and wide, we chose Sekisui House from Japan because of the company's unrivalled global experience in modular construction and shared values and philosophy that we are making homes not units, and a joint belief in the need for a green future.

"We are incredibly excited about the accelerated production of much-needed homes and evolving traditional practices as we embrace the benefits of innovative offsite construction. I hope it will establish us as the housing partner of choice for landowners – both public and private."

Eversheds Sutherland advised Urban Splash, with corporate partner Alistair Cree leading a 35-strong cross-practice team including partner Daniel Walsh, legal director Jamie Partridge, principal associate Elizabeth Tindall, senior associates Annika Unsworth and Russell Naglis, and associates Thomas Donohoe and Misha Sealy.

Grant Thornton's North West advisory team provided due diligence to Urban Splash with partner Philip Grindley assisted by Jenny Serridge.

 

SOURCE: Insider Media Limited


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