UK: US investor Ares has acquired a 70 per cent stake in London operator Go Native for an undisclosed sum.
According to a report in Property Week, Ares is understood to
have acquired Go Native as a vehicle to support future acquisitions
in the serviced apartment and build-to-rent sectors. The move
follows its joint acquisition with Capital & Centric of The
Place Aparthotel in Manchester for around £30 million in June,
which Go Native has been appointed to manage.
Go Native, founded by CEO Guy Nixon, operates 1,750 apartments across 13 developments in London. The company posted a turnover of £17.7 million for the year to 31 December 2015. It is looking to expand its portfolio in the capital to 3,000 apartments within four years. Target locations for new acquisitions include east London, the City and Heathrow.
Go Native has recently moved in to the letting and management of build-to-rent developments.
There are a couple of significant points about this transaction. Firstly, the acquisition proves the continuing attraction of the UK serviced apartment sector to overseas investors - with Ares joining other US private equity outfits such as Starwood Capital and Oaktree in the space.
Secondly, it signals Go Native's intentions to enter the PRS market in a big way. The skillsets involved in managing PRS properties and extended stay serviced apartments obviously overlap considerably, so not only does the move make sense, it could well pave the way for other operators to do the same.