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Centurion Corp to acquire student accommodation asset in Nottingham for $27 mil

Stanislaus Jude Chan

SINGAPORE (Dec 9): Dormitory operator Centurion Corporation is acquiring Archer House, a 177-bed student accommodation asset in Nottingham, UK, at a purchase consideration of 15.1 million pounds ($27.0 million).

Centurion’s second acquisition in Nottingham, this will bring the group’s UK portfolio to a total of over 2,850 beds across 11 purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) assets in five cities.

Centurion plans to manage Archer House under its student accommodation brand, dwell.

Located in the city centre, dwell Archer House is in close proximity to the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University.

Since it completed construction in late September 2018, Archer House has achieved 100% occupancy over the course of 2019 and continues to enjoy full occupancy for the current academic year.

Matt Bowen, head of Student Property Research at Knight Frank UK, notes that there is a gap in supply of accommodation in Nottingham, which continues to see healthy growth in the higher education student population.

“Both UK domiciled and international full time students in Nottingham have increased by over 13% between 2016 and 2019, outstripping that seen across the UK as a whole. This growth, representing an additional 6,690 students has not been matched by new PBSA provision, with just 1,100 new bed spaces added to supply over the same period,” Bowen says.

Citing a Knight Frank report earlier this year, Centurion adds that the current supply and pipeline of student housing can only accommodate 44.4% of the total student population in Nottingham, leaving 55.6% of unmet demand for student accommodation.

“Our student accommodation portfolio in the UK has continued to benefit from the positive supply-demand dynamics of the student accommodation sector, and Nottingham is one of the key cities that we are keen to expand,” says Kong Chee Min, CEO of Centurion Corp.

“With the addition of dwell Archer House we are poised to capitalise on rising demand for student housing in the UK. We remain selective in pursuing strategic acquisitions such as dwell Archer House to enhance our global portfolio of quality accommodation assets and recurring income for the group,” he adds.

The proposed acquisition is expected to increase Centurion’s total student and workers accommodation portfolio to 33 assets globally, bringing the total number of beds under management to more than 65,000.

As at 9.42am, shares in Centurion Corp are trading flat at 44 cents.