The Student Hotel secures investment from GIC and APG

GIC and APG acquire a stake in The Student Hotel to accelerate its international expansion, valuing the company at €2.1bn.

Co-working space at The Student Hotel, which has secured investment from GIC and APG | PBSA News
Co-working space at The Student Hotel, which has secured investment from GIC and APG.

The Student Hotel, APG, Aermont Capital, Charlie MacGregor and GIC reach an agreement that will see GIC and APG acquire a substantial stake in The Student Hotel to accelerate its international expansion for the hybrid hospitality leader, subject to customary regulatory approvals. The transaction values the hotel, including assets currently under development, at €2.1bn.   

Morgan Stanley acted as financial advisor to The Student Hotel, Aermont Capital and APG. Allen & Overy acted as legal advisor to Aermont. Loyens & Loeff acted as legal advisor to The Student Hotel.  

“We are very excited to welcome GIC on board, and together with APG, we look forward to bringing The Student Hotel experience to more cities across Europe. We have bold plans and the additional committed capital will allow us to be even more ambitious.”

Charlie Macgregor, Founder and CEO, The Student Hotel

The deal sees APG and founder Charlie MacGregor, who first invested in 2015, increase their current stake in The Student Hotel. MacGregor and Aermont Capital entered into business in 2014 after MacGregor opened the first hotel in 2012, whilst GIC joins as a new investor.  

“We are pleased to invest in The Student Hotel as its assets are well-located, enjoy good connectivity to city centres and transportation networks, and are in close proximity to universities and other amenities. We are confident that this investment will generate resilient long-term returns.”

Lee Kok Sun, Chief Investment Officer of Real Estate, GIC

The Student Hotel’s hybrid hospitality model combines student accommodation, hotel rooms, co-working and meeting spaces, bars and restaurants. During the pandemic the hybrid model proved resilient as The hotel was able to increase room allocation for students whilst leisure and corporate travel dramatically reduced, thereby achieving strong occupancy rates and remaining cash positive. The Student Hotel is set to benefit from the hotel and travel market rebounding this summer, and its student bookings for the 2022/23 academic year stand at record levels.    

“The Student Hotel’s hybrid hospitality model is unique. Anchored by purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) that appeals to the student demographic, yet still catering to both business and leisure uses, this flexibility enables The Student Hotel to capture opportunities as demand patterns fluctuate throughout the year.”

Tracy Stroh, Region Head of Europe, Real Estate, GIC

With APG and GIC’s commitments, The Student Hotel is able to accelerate its growth strategy to expand into key European cities and grow its presence from 25 to 50 hotels, of which 15 are currently operational and three are opening in 2022 in Madrid, Barcelona and Toulouse.  

“Together with GIC, Charlie McGregor and the rest of the The Student Hotel team we are looking forward to further expand The Student Hotel’s unique hybrid and exciting concept across Europe. We are convinced that The Student Hotel will provide an attractive long-term, stable investment return for our pension fund client ABP, and its participants.”

Robert-Jan Foortse, Head of European Property Investments, APG 

The hotel is designed for Millennial and Gen-Z audiences, with a focus on community building through its mixed-use facilities and blended spaces, offering co-working and meeting spaces that also attract local start-ups, corporates and neighbourhood communities. It also collaborates with local municipalities to revitalise the local communities by improving the quality of hospitality services to attract talent to cities. 

To address guest needs and increase flexibility across its offering, The hotel is investing in technology to implement the first space/time booking platform across its hotels. Guests will be able to book any space for a defined period of time – including meeting rooms, co-working desks, gym and pool access, and ping pong tables.

“Since 2014, we have been the proud partners of Charlie MacGregor, The Student Hotel and its management team, and APG. This great journey which started with one promising project in Amsterdam turned into an unrivalled portfolio of 25 prime assets and projects across eight countries in Europe.

“The Student Hotel investment underscores well Aermont Capital’s expertise and experience at supporting operational real estate platforms to fulfil their potential through real estate led strategies. Charlie’s vision of building a truly hybrid hospitality operating model has positioned The Student Hotel at the forefront of both hospitality and real estate trends, and The Student Hotel’s future is bright under its new shareholders’ stewardship.”

Vincent Rouget, Partner, Aermont Capital