GSA founder launches Yugo as ‘first global student housing operator’

Nicholas Porter, founder of Global Student Accommodation Group (GSA), has merged the group's existing brands into a new global student housing operator.

Called Yugo, the new platform has been created by combining GSA's existing student housing operating brands – The Student Housing Company, Nexo Residencias, Uninest Student Residences and the US operations of UComm.

Porter said the move will enable Yugo and GSA to ‘unlock significant opportunity to scale and drive investment performance’. The new platform will have a portfolio of 95 properties (living spaces) in nine countries, with 45,000 beds in more than 75 of the top cities in the world for higher education.

Key locations include the UK and Ireland, Spain, Germany, Australia, Japan, the UAE, China and the US.

Yugo will ‘enhance students’ overall experiences throughout and beyond university life,’ the press statement announcing the launch said. It will offer ‘a truly differentiated living experience that is environmentally and socially conscious, emotionally supportive and safe’.

‘The launch of Yugo is more important now than ever to support Gen Z students to live their best life,’ said Porter, who will chair the new business. ‘We know that students who are happy with their housing are ten times more likely to be happy with their university experience. Yugo’s student-led approach gives them continuous opportunities to express their needs and collaborate with us to develop training and workshops that support their transition to and from student life, and to create and run programs that educate them about sustainable living – an issue of huge importance to this generation of students.’

According to new research conducted by Yugo surveying 6,000 students across the globe, young people rank climate change as the top issue the world is facing today (75% in the UK, 61% in Ireland, 62% in Spain, 50% in Germany, 55% in Australia and 42% in the US), ahead of government and law enforcement corruption and racial justice. 71% feel more should be done to tackle climate change and over half (52%) say using plastic is the most damaging consumer behavior for the environment.

Yugo pledges to eliminate single-use plastics in living spaces and corporate offices, supply sustainably sourced beds and chairs to support students’ physical and emotional environment and educate students on energy usage and sustainable living in Yugo spaces around the world. This approach will be enabled by Yuniverse, Yugo’s bespoke technology platform providing digital services with greater reach and connectivity to students globally.



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