Kajima Student Housing Limited (KSH), a wholly owned subsidiary of Kajima Europe and part of Kajima Corporation, the leading Japanese real estate investment, development and construction company, has, in partnership with Griffin Real Estate Partners (GRE) acquired Student Depot, Poland’s largest provider of student accommodation, from Oaktree Capital Management.
Student Depot, which by September 2019 will operate 2,000 beds across five sites in Poland, representing half of the Polish Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) market, was purchased in a transaction worth over €60m. The deal was made in a 90:10 joint venture with entities controlled by GRE, the largest real estate investment manager in CEE, and from entities indirectly controlled by Oaktree, the global asset management firm specialising in alternative investment strategies.
The business was originally set up by GRE and Oaktree in 2015 has evolved to become the largest owner and operator of PBSA in Poland, and is the fastest growing provider in the country. It is set to open new sites in Gdansk in 2020, with multiple additional sites in Warsaw, Krakow and Wroclaw identified for delivery in 2021/2022 and beyond. The Warsaw-based student housing business currently owns and operates approximately 1,550 beds with sites in Poznan, Lublin, Wroclaw, and Lodz, with a further circa 500 being delivered this summer in the capital. This acquisition by KSH in partnership with GRE offers a high growth investment for the business, and comes with a significant development pipeline in the coming years.
John Harcourt, Director of Kajima Student Housing, commented: “This acquisition by Kajima Student Housing in partnership with Griffin Real Estate offers a high growth investment for the business, and comes with a significant development pipeline in the coming years. Poland is a high growth market for PBSA, and we are attracted by both the quality of the assets and the strength of the business’s management team. We are also excited to be working alongside a partner of such pedigree like Griffin Real Estate. We consider this to be a landmark deal for Kajima Europe and we will continue to look for further opportunities not only in Poland but across the continent.”
Nebil Senman, Managing Partner at Griffin Real Estate, commented: “In recent years, the interest in high-quality accommodation has increased among international as well as domestic students, with only around 1% of students having access to purpose-built space in Poland. With Student Depot, Griffin Real Estate created the market leader in the Polish student housing sector offering premium and modern student accommodation facilities. We are very proud to have the opportunity to create a new joint venture with Kajima and sharing the vision to further develop Student Depot and capitalise on the strong market fundamentals and latent demand for student accommodation.”
Jolanta Bubel, CEO at Student Depot, commented: “Student Depot has grown into the largest and most recognisable PBSA brand in Poland, and we have commenced an ambitious development programme to continue this growth to capitalise on the demand from our customers for high-quality accommodation. Kajima and Griffin are committed to supporting the business’s expansion, and we are excited to be able to take the company forward into its next phase of development.”