Property round-up: Mersey Reach; Integritas Property Group; Emirates Old Trafford; Magenta Living; PMJ Capital; Together

Mersey Reach

Northwood Urban Logistics’ Mersey Reach development at Aintree has secured another new occupier and placed several other units under offer, which would take occupancy at the scheme to 92% with only two remaining units.

Florence Roby, a supplier of luxury work uniforms for the beauty, spa, hotel, and medical industries, has taken a 10-year lease on Unit 6B Mersey Reach, comprising 7,541 sq ft.

Other occupiers include Selco Builders Warehouse, Hardy, Happy Drinks, CNC Robotics, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, and TF Solutions.

Mersey Reach is located on Dunnings Bridge Road, one of the busiest arterial roads into Liverpool with 40,000 passing vehicles each day and offers easy access to the M57 and M58 at Switch Island. All units benefit from an EPC rating of B, natural lighting, and insulated cladding, while the site also offers electric vehicle (EV) charging points and secure cycle parking.

Thomas Marriott, from B8 Real Estate, said: “Within the MLI and mid-box industrial sector, new build take-up for H1, 2023 in the NW region stood at 580,000 sq ft across 29 transactions.

“This was a six per cent increase compared to H1, 2022, that had seen 544,000 sq ft across 16 transactions. Occupier sentiment remains strong that require good quality second hand or modern/new build.

“With the current levels of high demand, take-up for this sub-sector is expected to be ahead of the five-year average, albeit good quality availability is diminishing.”

Iain Taylor, director at Northwood Urban Logistics, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Florence Roby to Mersey Reach. There is a significant lack of availability of good quality industrial premises within Liverpool City Region and the scheme offers a fantastic solution for growing occupiers.’’

B8 Real Estate and JLL acted as joint agents on behalf of landlord, Northwood Urban Logistics, and LM6 acted on behalf of Florence Roby.


IPG Dubai office

Integritas Property Group (IPG) has opened a new office in Dubai. The move is aimed at bringing foreign investment into the region, which is seeing a regeneration boom.

The new office, located in Business Bay, one of Dubai’s central business and commercial hubs, will serve as a base for IPG’s existing investors in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Middle East regions.

From working with first time to seasoned investors who want to explore diversifying into the UK real estate market and ultra-high net worth investors for joint venture partnerships, IPG’s new Dubai office will be a base for IPG to expand across Middle East.

Leah Higginson and Lori Driscoll, who both have extensive experience in global investment management, have been recently appointed to manage this new venture.

With more than a decade of experience in the property industry, Leah Higson has cultivated robust relationships with industry leaders with extensive expertise spanning a wide spectrum of areas, including residential and commercial investments, portfolio management, and comprehensive research and analysis of the UK property market.

Lori Driscoll brings more than a decade of multifaceted real estate experience, garnered in both the UK and the Middle East.

IPG CEO and founder, Mitchell Walsh, said: “We are excited to be expanding our international presence with the opening of a new office in Dubai. Over the last 18 months, we have seen an increasing demand from our Middle Eastern investors and wanted to ensure that we were able to offer them the best possible service.”

Leah Higginson, global investment manager, said: “IPG’s Dubai office will showcase the immense potential of the UK’s property market, which has consistently attracted a diverse array of property investors, including those from overseas.”

Liverpool, the home of IPG, is an emerging hot spot for landlords, with annual apartment rental rates experiencing an impressive surge, surpassing the national average rental increase, 10% signifying a significant upturn in the city’s real estate sector.

IPG will initially promote its Sovereign Point development, situated in Liverpool, while actively seeking investment opportunities for Dubai investors within its other units across all its developments.


Andy Anson, left, and James Anderson

Emirates Old Trafford’s Hilton Garden Inn extension has been officially launched by Lancashire and England’s James Anderson.

Anderson was joined in the expanded four-star Hilton Garden Inn by more than 120 special guests including a number of high profile former and current Lancashire and England players, club partners, and representatives from the wider Trafford and Greater Manchester area and business community.

The new hotel extension has increased the overall capacity to 250 premium bedrooms, including a new top floor of suites. The facility includes two outdoor terraces, and a restaurant and event space, The Edge, which was unveiled during the Ashes Test at Emirates Old Trafford in July, and was open for members during Lancashire’s home County Championship matches from July until the end of the season.

On the top floor, seven premium suites overlook Emirates Old Trafford and have been named in honour of Lancashire legends, past and present, who have all made a significant impact on the international stage and to date have won just shy of 1,200 international caps between them.

The new facility is the culmination of a £75m investment over 15 years and a regeneration and transformation process that has reinvented the stadium into one of the leading multi-purpose venues in the world.

Andy Anson, Lancashire Cricket’s chair, said: “It was great that England’s best ever bowler, James Anderson was present to unveil our new plaque celebrating the new world class facility.”


Hodson Homes

Specialist property lender, PMJ Capital, has provided a £975,000 development loan to fund two executive net zero carbon houses in Whittle le Woods, Lancashire, for local developer Hodson Homes.

The funding package comprises a development loan over a 15-month term at 63% LTGDV and will fund the build costs of one five-bedroom and one four-bedroom eco home.

The two eco self-sustainable dwellings have been designed using natural and local materials that are sympathetic to the local environment, with a low carbon footprint and are capable of running off-grid.

Hodson Homes was established in 2020 specifically for the design and construction of eco-friendly self-sustainable homes. Glen Hodson said: “We are passionate about the ability to create homes that reduce the impact of carbon on the environment.

“Building and construction is currently responsible for 39% of carbon emissions worldwide, with a further 16% carbon emissions coming from household consumption. It is possible, with new technology, to dramatically reduce these statistics. Our new homes have the potential to reduce construction carbon emissions to 12% and over the building’s lifespan, it will have a 0% negative impact to its environment in relation to carbon.”

David Rainford, managing director at PMJ Capital, said: “It has been fantastic to be able to support Glen and the team at Hodson Homes on their first highly sustainable scheme.”

The properties are due to be completed in August 2024. One has already been sold with the other currently available for sale with local agent Forbes Estate Agents.


Paul Holvey and customer liaison officer Lorraine Allen

Magenta Living is investing £3.6m on making its homes more energy efficient as part of their journey to net zero.

Last year, the Wirral-based housing association was successful in securing £1.6m from Wave 1 of the Government’s Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF). In March this year, they were awarded a further £1.8m in Wave 2 of the programme and they are investing a further £1.8m of their own funding.

Having successfully retrofitted 98 homes in Wave 1, Magenta is now pushing ahead to install energy efficiency measures, including external wall insulation and loft insulation to a further 161 homes across Wirral, following a fabric-first approach.

Sustainable Building Services UK (SBS), which managed and delivered the retrofit of the 98 homes in Wave 1 to PAS 2035/2030, is continuing the work with Magenta Living during this first phase of Wave 2.

Forty homes on Deverill Road in Rock Ferry on Wirral are currently being transformed into more energy-efficient properties where customers will benefit from warmer homes, lower energy bills and reduce carbon emissions.

Work on the first phase of Wave 2 installation of EWI has just started. Phase 2 will be going out to tender in November.

Magenta Living’s executive director of assets and development, Ian Thomson, said:  “We want to do the right thing by our customers and this is one of the ways we are addressing energy efficiency in their homes. We’re also looking at alternative heating systems, like heat pumps.

“Our climate change strategy is helping us work towards the Government target of being net zero carbon by 2050. So, we’re not only retrofitting our current properties, but all our new build properties have an EPC rating B or above – meaning they are very energy efficient and have a low environmental impact.”

SBS regional director, Ian Jones, said: “Magenta Living is making excellent use of energy efficiency funding it has available and we’re extremely pleased to be delivering its latest decarbonisation scheme – building on the strong collaborative relationship that we share.”

Paul Holvey, a Magenta Living customer, said: “We have noticed a real difference downstairs, even though the work is only part-finished – we’re hoping to feel more benefit and save on heating bills once the work is completed.”


Ron and Servak Singh

Two entrepreneurial brothers have committed to improving the lives of hundreds of Manchester’s vulnerable adults with ambitious plans to grow their social housing company using finance from Cheadle-based lender Together.

Business partners Ron and Servak Singh have big plans for social housing in Manchester, and are buying properties to house those in need. Currently, they provide 138 single bed spaces, and in excess of 50 family homes, a number which is continually increasing.

Inspired by the brother’s plans, Together, which provides personal and commercial loans and has a loan book of £6.4bn, set up a funding line with them to help support their growth.

Ron Singh said their ambition was to “see an end to homelessness in Manchester”.

He said: “To be able to operate in this industry is incredibly rewarding – our goal is to combat the homelessness crisis. Fortunately for us, we have been able to grow the business, and with this growth we are able to create more bed spaces for vulnerable adults and families. We are now looking to bring 500 additional beds to the area by the end of 2024.”

The brothers initially founded the overall VS Property Group in 2017, a family-owned and operated business with strong links to communities across Greater Manchester. It offers services to its clients, including buying, selling and renting as well as property management. They also set up VSP Maintenance, which offers social housing maintenance to companies in the sector, and Rtech Group which provides social housing furniture across UK.

In 2021, they founded VSPG Housing, which purchases and refurbishes properties that are then given to families in the local authority.

Government data has shown that there has been a severe drop in social housing lettings offered in Manchester over the past decade, a situation mirrored across England. In line with this, Manchester, reportedly, has the worst rate of homelessness in the North West, with 7,450 people living rough.

Alex Bodie, head of social housing at Together, said: “Watching the success of the brothers’ company, which continues to grow whilst doing such amazing work for the community, is truly inspirational. We will continue to support their projects, and we’re excited to see what’s next on the horizon for them.”

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