Date: May 2016
Deal Size: £25m structured equity – funding the development of 1,000 new PRS homes
About the client: PlaceFirst is one of the UK’s only integrated specialists in the Private Rented Sector (PRS) as a developer, owner and operator. Seeking to redefine the institutional PRS sector in the UK, PlaceFirst develops modern, high-quality, affordable homes, designed specifically from the ground up for the private rental market.
About the transaction: Akur Capital ran an extensive process to identify and deliver the most appropriate capital to partner with the PlaceFirst management team. As an emerging asset class within UK real estate, institutional PRS is still very much in its development phase in the UK – there is currently no clear accepted market practice to delivery – but the need for high quality PRS in the UK is overwhelming.

Akur is pleased that ESO Capital, a European special situations investor with real estate interests, has committed to partner with PlaceFirst for the development and delivery of its PRS portfolio.

David Smith-Milne, CEO of PlaceFirst commented:
“We are grateful to the Akur team for their work in the delivery of ESO as our new funding partner and for their support and advice over an extended period of time. We were attracted to the Akur team in part because of their success in structuring and financing new and highly focused alternative real estate asset classes, within both private and UK listed REIT structures. We also had a shared vision for the potential of the PRS space in the UK from the very outset. From the early stages of the project Akur’s understanding of the issues of this emerging sector has been critical in securing a successful funding outcome for PlaceFirst. We look forward to continuing to work with Akur as PlaceFirst develops a new standard for the delivery of PRS in the UK”

Lead: David Shapton, Tom Frost
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Chris Young…

Chris is focused on listed closed-ended funds, specialising in both equity and debt capital fundraising. He has over 16 years’ experience in both sales and research. With relationships across many of the large institutional investors in the sector, he has worked across IPOs, secondary fundraisings, placings and sales. He began his career in the City as an investment funds analyst at Credit Lyonnais in 1999, and has subsequently held positions at Lazard Panmure Gordon, Arbuthnot Securities, and most recently as a specialist salesman within the investment funds team at Westhouse Securities. He is focused on private and public real estate and REITs, infrastructure and utilities, emerging markets, private equity and alternatives. Tel: +44 (0) 20 3780 8746 Mob: +44 (0) 7471 141 303 Email: