AllianceBernstein backs Greystar’s London BTR scheme with £96m loan

The financing will fund part of a £250m regeneration scheme.

Nashville-headquartered investment manager AllianceBernstein has provided a £96 million (€109 million) loan to residential real estate company Greystar to support the delivery of a build-to-rent scheme in London.

The loan will fund the development of a scheme at Crown Trading Estate in Hayes, Greater London, which forms part of the £250 million Old Vinyl Factory regeneration plan, led by developer U+I. The property once developed will comprise 318 residential units, including 89 affordable housing units, a commercial unit and over 10,000 square feet of amenity space.

Speaking to Real Estate Capital Europe, Clark Coffee, chief investment officer of AllianceBernstein’s European Commercial Real Estate Debt business, said the deal is the first time the manager has lent to Greystar in Europe.

AllianceBernstein was convinced to lend against the scheme due to the “chronic shortage” of fit-for-purpose residential stock and the project’s proximity to the Elizabeth Line rail service, which opened in 2022, he said.

“The loan is for the development, plus a stabilisation period,” he added.

Greystar acquired the Crown Trading Estate for £26.5 million in an off-market transaction in February 2022. The project is due to be completed in the third quarter of 2025. Jamie Spencer, director of UK investment at Greystar, said at the time of the acquisition the area’s demographics were attractive, with Hayes forecast to have one of the fastest growing populations in London through to 2026.

In July, real estate consultant Savills, in its UK Build to Rent Market Update – Q2 2023 report, said rising wages are supporting rental growth as supply-side challenges persist. Rents grew by 10.4 percent in the year to May 2023. Q2 investment figures for the sector stood at £1.26 billion, the highest Q2 on record, with London at the forefront of investment.