EQT Exeter enters the UK student accommodation market

Bath student accommodation community. Image courtesy of EQT Exeter

EQT Exeter entered the UK student accommodation market with the acquisition of six communities across the country. The company is acquiring these student accommodations through its EQT Real Estate II fund. The acquisitions are two separate transactions where the sellers are subsidiaries of Watkin Jones PLC and Tidal construction.

The acquisition totals 2,313 beds, of which 1,059 will be developed by Watkin Jones with deliveries scheduled during 2023 and 2024. As for the completed communities, they are fully occupied. All student accommodation is centrally located in leading university towns across the UK

The portfolio is divided into five assets totaling 2,063 beds acquired from Watkin Jones and 250 beds from a community of Tide Construction. Watkin Jones’ acquisitions are located in Bath, Nottingham and Bristol in England; Swansea in Wales; and Glasgow in Scotland, three of which are currently under construction. Once completed, Fresh, Watkin Jones’ in-house operator, will manage the five properties on behalf of EQT Exeter.

The Tide Construction community, Great Court, is located in South Bermondsey, London, and is close to all of the city’s top universities. Community amenities include a 24/7 reception, gym, study space, courtyard, cinema and lounge. Great Court reached full occupancy after opening in 2021 and is currently managed by RCMP.


While EQT Exeter’s student accommodation portfolio already includes properties in Spain and Ireland, this latest acquisition is the company’s first entry into the UK student accommodation market. Its European student housing stock now totals 5,222 beds.

EQT Exeter said it plans to continue its strategy of acquiring student accommodation in leading university towns across Europe which are experiencing severe supply shortages. The company said it sees significant growth potential in the sector and has a strong pipeline of additional acquisition opportunities in European markets. Earlier this month, EQT Exeter also acquired US residential property investment manager Redwood Capital Group.

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