Joint venture partnership expands presence in PBSA in Bristol

GSA and Harrison Street have announced the acquisition of two purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) assets in Bristol.

Communal space - GSA | Harrison Street | PBSA News

Student living provider, Global Student Accommodation Group (GSA) and its joint venture (JV) partner, investment management firm, Harrison Street have announced the acquisition of two purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) assets in Bristol.

Bristol is one of the UK’s leading university cities and the Transaction increases the JV partners’ exposure to its dynamic and growing student market. Under the terms of the Transaction, the JV has acquired Print Hall and Unity Street residences from a UK Pension Fund, with HSBC providing bank debt for the acquisition. The properties will be operated by GSA, extending the long-term partnership with the University of Bristol. 

“This transaction expands GSA’s footprint in Bristol to support the city’s strong and growing student market. We’re now home to over 800 of the University of Bristol’s students, and I’m delighted to strengthen our existing ties with the university, one of the UK’s leading academic institutions. 

“Harrison Street is a valued and longstanding partner, and we are very pleased to be working with them on another transaction. Our investment will provide significant benefits for all of our stakeholders as we continue to develop our portfolio of Tier one assets in key locations.”

 James Hunt, Managing Director, Real Estate, GSA
Purpose-built student accommodation, Bristol - GSA | Harrison Street | PBSA News

Print Hall – which opened in 2017 – and Unity Street – which opened in 2019 – are adjacent student residences with a combined 500 beds. Both provide studios and single en-suite bedrooms within cluster apartments.

The PBSA is in an ideal location for students attending the University of Bristol and is close to the university’s new Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus – which is anticipated to be home to 3,500 students and 800 staff when it opens in 2023. The city’s central amenities are also close by – and in an area undergoing comprehensive regeneration. 

“This transaction is consistent with Harrison Street’s approach of investing in high quality PBSA assets in strong European markets. Bristol is a great university town home to more than 46,000 students, with an additional 3,500 expected in 2023 following the University of Bristol’s planned expansion.  

“We are pleased to continue our long-standing partnership with GSA, a best-in-class operator in the PBSA sector, to ensure Bristol remains a top destination for students across the UK and broader continent. Finally, we look forward to partnering with the University of Bristol to provide high quality student accommodation that will enhance the university experience for its students.”

 Rob Mathias, Partner and Head of International Business, Harrison Street