Mould makes £20 million bet on London private rental market

Veteran UK property investor Raymond Mould has signalled his interest in the private rented sector market, with a £20 million investment in a joint venture that will see him hold 59 apartments for long term rental.

Mould’s new venture, Newtree Capital, is linking up with London apartment developer Galliard Homes, to build 114 homes in south east London, on a site at Grove Place, Eltham. Newtree will take over a whole block of flats once the project is completed, containing a mix of one, two and three bed properties.

“We are delighted to have completed this joint venture for Grove Place with Galliard Homes with whom we hope to add further projects to our transaction pipeline,” said Mould. “The transaction demonstrates that good opportunities continue to exist in the private rented sector, notably outside the prime core areas of Central London.”

Newtree is already in talks to involve itself in a number of other private rented projects in UK housing markets where fundamentals point to a good medium term rental return. Some of these could be by way of purchasing completed properties, while others as with Grove Place could involve taking a stake in a development, ahead of construction.

Galliard is also talking positively about carrying out further projects with Newtree. Said Stephen Conway, Galliard chief executive: “We welcome Newtree Capital as a new joint venture partner to the Galliard Group and look forward to working with them on Grove Place. We very much hope to undertake future transactions together in due course.”

This is not the first time that Mould has taken a shine to the residential rental sector. In 2009, through his London & Stamford vehicle, he built a portfolio of rental homes, starting with the £41.4 million acquisition of 146 flats at Highbury Square; while these were initially rented out, the rise in the London market subsequently encouraged the investors to sell out, rather than hold. This time, will Mould stay in for the medium term?

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