Patient capital offers huge potential as a form of investment within different asset classes including build to rent, strategic land, education and life sciences. We recently brought together a panel to discuss the numerous opportunities, issues and prospects in the field.
Chaired by Michelle Cookson, the panel comprised of: Richard Howe, Managing Director at Marshall Group Properties Ltd; Julia Foster, Managing Partner at David Lock Associates; Jon Crossfield Head of Strategic Partnerships at Savills Investment Management; Graham Matthews, Director of Estates at Cambridge University; and our own Head of Patient Capital, Carina Davis.
The panel discussed some of the past and current projects they’ve been involved with, including the award winning development at Eddington, Cambridge (University of Cambridge) and the Marshall development at Cambridge East. They also considered which assets have performed well over the past 18 months, those expected to perform well over the next 18 months, and what, in the panel’s opinion, would help unlock more strategic sites throughout the country.
Key takeaways were:
- Beds and sheds performed well and continue to be expected to perform well
- Office investment has been more challenged and is expected to continue to face challenges
- The defining factors of a strategic site include patient capital, early investment in place making, diversity of choice in terms of product and tenure, sufficient flexibility in the planning permission to respond to market need and policy requirements, and the long term stewardship of the place once created. Stewardship being considered the defining factor of an exemplar scheme.
- Challenges to delivering these large-scale schemes include: site assembly, inconsistent housing policy across the political parties, instability in leadership (notably in the chair of housing minister) and the need for more infrastructure grants and funding (with an eye to Homes England already operating in this sphere and looking to do more in the future, we hope!).
If you’d like to discuss how Mills & Reeve can help you in your work within the patient capital sphere, or to discuss potential vehicles for investment, please contact Carina Davis.
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