Retirement village

Silbury Finance provides £47m development loan for Cobham retirement village



A joint venture between Audley Group, Schroders Real Estate and Octopus Real Estate has completed a £47m development finance facility with Silbury Finance to fund the development of a 74-apartment retirement village in Cobham, Surrey.

The loan represents the first underwritten by Silbury Finance in the retirement living sector.

Alongside equity investment from Octopus Real Estate and Audley, the 26-month loan will finance the development of Audley Fairmile, which will comprise two-bedroom apartments.

The retirement village will be operated by Audley and will include a pool, gym, restaurant and bar bistro. 
 
Domas Karsokas, senior investment manager at Octopus Real Estate, commented: “The last year has shown the retirement sector to be a key resilient asset class within the alternative real estate sector. 

“Customer sentiment has gone from strength to strength and we are thrilled to be able to proceed with another project that will go some way to fill the demand for this type of housing.”
  
Gavin Eustace, founding partner at Silbury Finance, said: “This is a landmark transaction for Silbury as we target £500m of lending this year, in a sector where we have significant experience financing schemes. 

“The UK retirement living space is one of our high conviction calls due to its nascency and the associated reluctance of more traditional lenders and debt funds to underwrite mid-size development loans for experienced developers.”

Gary Burton, CFO at Audley Group, added: “The strength of the retirement sector has never been more apparent than in the last year. 

“While the pandemic has negatively affected many real estate asset classes, retirement villages have never been in more demand. 
 
“Continuing to accelerate our growth means that we can provide much needed units to the market swiftly.”

The JV was formed in August 2019 to develop four retirement villages totalling over 500 units and representing a total value of £400m. 

The development in Cobham is the third project undertaken by the JV.



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