Catella's European student digs fund lifts invested capital to €100m

Berlin-based Catella Residential Investment Management (CRIM) has expanded the portfolio of the Catella European Student Housing Fund II (CESHF II) with three acquisitions of student residences in Austria, France and Spain totalling €55 mln.

Following the transactions, the Fund has an investment volume of approximately €100 mln in four European countries just five months after the fund’s launch in September 2019. CESHF II is the successor of Catella’s first European Student Housing Fund which has generated a net internal rate of return (IRR) of more than 7% a year since its launch in 2013.
 
Alexander Brüning, fund manager at CRIM, said: 'Student housing has increasingly developed into an established asset class in the last 10 years and our first pan-European student housing fund has enabled us to deliver strong annual returns for our investors. Education is becoming an economic factor worldwide, and the number of students, both nationally and internationally, continues to rise significantly. Across Europe, roughly only 10% of students have access to a dedicated student apartment. Affordable dorms in good locations therefore offer investors stable, largely anti-cyclical returns.'
 
New portfolio
In Austria, CESHF II has bought an eight-storey building comprising a rentable area of 5,622 m2 in Linz, an important university location and the state capital of Upper Austria, from a local entrepreneur. Dating from 2015, the property comprises a total of 224 rooms or 129 apartments spread over eight full floors excluding the basement.

In France, the Fund has acquired a property with a rentable area of 4,757 m2 in Évry, about 25 km southeast of Paris, for around €20 mln from a well-known local project developer, IMODEV. The building comprises a total of 242 student apartments, largely one-person studios, spread over the upper eight to 10 floors.
 
In Seville, Spain, the Fund has acquired a property with 196 student apartments for 211 beds comprising a total gross floor area of 5,132 m2 above ground, divided over five floors, for around €15 mln from a well-known local project developer. The majority – or 181 - of the apartments are individual rooms and the complex offer also a 60 m2 fully-equipped roof terrace, an exterior common swimming pool and 32 parking spaces located in the underground garage.

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