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Matter welcomes UBS Asset Management as anchor investor in new UK Single Family Rental housing fund

10 Nov 2023
Matter is pleased to announce that UBS Asset Management, Real Estate & Private Markets, Multi-Managers business (“UBS REPM MM”) has agreed to invest in a new fund, Matter UK Residential Income Fund (“MUKRIF”) seeded by assets from our portfolio company Placefirst, who will also continue as a property manager.

With Matter as investment manager and Placefirst as property manager, UBS REPM MM will act as the anchor LP in the vehicle, with an initial commitment of £105 million. The fund’s initial transaction includes the acquisition of over 560, high-quality, single-family rental (“SFR”) homes located in five sites across five different UK towns, including Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield. Future acquisitions of assets from Placefirst, as well as from other developers, are expected in the coming years, with the fund targeting core returns over the long-term.

Having identified a chronic structural undersupply of housing in the UK, Matter first invested in Placefirst in 2016, partnering with the management team to provide the funding and expertise required to achieve scale. Since then, Placefirst has grown into a nationally recognised leader in SFR, with c.1,500 homes completed to date and a further c.1,000 in various stages of development.

Placefirst continues to maintain a significant development pipeline, with the team currently assessing over 50 schemes with the potential to deliver over 12,500 homes. The company’s existing portfolio is 99% occupied, has a long-term gross to net of c.80% and has demonstrated average rental growth in excess of 5% in the prior four years.
MUKRIF represents the second major direct capital commitment received by Matter for its Placefirst platform in the past 18 months, demonstrating growing institutional investor interest in the sector.
The commitment from UBS REPM MM is a testament to Matter’s extensive knowledge of the market and skill as managers in leading Placefirst through its initial development phase. We look forward to working closely with UBS REPM MM to capitalise on the strong momentum in UK SFR, and to delivering on Placefirst’s exceptional potential.
David Christie, CEO at Matter Real Estate