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Empiric acquires forward funded development in Huddersfield: Oldgate House

26th May 2015

The Board of Empiric Student Property plc (ticker: ESP) is pleased to announce that the Group has acquired a forward funded development in Huddersfield, known as Oldgate House, for a total investment of £11 million. It is currently being developed into a prime, purpose-built student accommodation asset.

The Group has acquired the freehold to the site on Oldgate, located very close to the city centre and within a five minute walk of the main campus of the University of Huddersfield.  The scheme comprises 179 beds across a mix of different size studios, together with communal space for students.  The property is also within a 10 minute walk to Snow Island, another of the Group's developments which is due to begin operations in September 2015. Once the two assets are operational, this will provide the Company with an opportunity for combining operations and achieving economies of scale.

Forshaw Land and Property Group Limited will undertake the redevelopment of the property on behalf of Empiric, to the Company's specifications.  The full investment required for the development will be invested in stages against development milestones. As is typical for Empiric's forward funded assets, the Company will receive an income return from the developer payable as a rental receipt during the development period.

The property is scheduled for practical completion by summer 2016, in time for the 2016/17 academic year.

Paul Hadaway, Chief Executive of Empiric Student Property plc, commented:

"The University of Huddersfield has won a number of awards in recent years including The Times Higher Education University of the Year, and student numbers are now over 19,000 (HESA 13/14). However, there is an increasing shortage of high-quality student accommodation in the town. Oldgate House is ideally located both for the university and local amenities and we expect the scheme to generate attractive returns in line with our stated investment parameters."
 

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The Empiric plc management team has a long track record in the acquisition, development and management of student accommodation assets in the UK.

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