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Empiric acquires student accommodation property in Canterbury: Pavilion Court

1st September 2016

The Board of Empiric Student Property plc (ticker: ESP), the owner and operator of premium student accommodation across the UK, is pleased to announce that the Group has acquired the freehold of a 79 bed student accommodation property in Canterbury for £9.2 million (excluding costs).

Pavilion Court was developed by the vendor, Pavilion Property Group, for the 2013/14 academic year. The property comprises 79 beds in a mix of studios and one, two, three and four-bed apartments. The property also includes a ground floor commercial unit currently let to Sainsbury's on a lease extending to 2027, with the next rent review due in February 2017.

The property is located on St Dunstan's Street in central Canterbury. The University of Kent is a 20 minute walk away and there is a regular university bus which stops outside the property.  Canterbury Christ Church University is a 15 minute walk away, through the city centre.

The property has let well historically, being 100% let for both the 2014/15 and 2015/16 academic years, and is letting in line with Empiric's expectations for 2016/17.  Hello Student® will be responsible for lettings and management of the property, which, to date, has been marketed by a local estate agent on behalf of the vendor.

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

"Pavilion Court is the Group's first acquisition in Canterbury, a city with over 25,000 full-time students and two large universities, the University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church University, as well as the Canterbury campus of the University for the Creative Arts. Canterbury's bustling, cosmopolitan atmosphere is popular with students and the city has easy access to London via rail as well as continental Europe via Eurostar.  According to the latest statistics from HESA (2014/15), the University of Kent has 24% international students and 21% postgraduate students.  This acquisition is in line with Empiric's investment criteria and returns profile."

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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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