Press Release – Property Week – 90 North outlines ambitious plans to hit $5bn in five years
90 North has set a target to grow its total deal volume to $5bn (£3.8bn) in five years as the firm expands in Europe with the acquisition of two office buildings for €91m (£81m).
Since 90 North was founded by Philip Churchill and Nick Judd in 2011, it has closed nearly $1.8bn of deals in the UK, continental Europe and the US.
To hit the target, dubbed ‘five in five’ by 90 North, the firm will expand its investment horizon even further. This summer, it opened an office in Sydney, which will pave the way for its first deals in the Australian market.
“We will only achieve it [the target] by being more global,” said Judd.
90 North specialises in Sharia-compliant investment and works with a number of investors in the Middle East. It is looking to grow its investor base further by working with other types of investor as well, particularly those with an ethical focus.
Judd said the firm was working on deals with Malaysian institutions through its office in Kuala Lumpur and also expected to begin working with South African investors.
This week, 90 North continued its acquisition push with the purchase – in partnership with Dubai-based Audacia Capital – of two office buildings that are being developed by RED Company in Hoofddorp, near Amsterdam in the Netherlands. One will be the EMEA headquarters of sportswear company ASICS and the other the global headquarters for the baby food and medical nutrition division of dairy giant Danone. The combined purchase price is €91m.
“From 90 North’s perspective, we like new or nearly new offices that have been modelled on long leases to very strong global covenants,” said Judd.
He added that the firm was positive about the outlook for the office market in Amsterdam, which would “no doubt be a beneficiary of Brexit”.
The deals follow other similar purchases by 90 North in the US and Europe of offices let to blue-chip tenants such as Saint-Gobain’s
North American headquarters in Philadelphia, the FBI headquarters in Denver, Colorado, and Siemens’ divisional headquarters in Leiden, the Netherlands.
In the UK, Judd said the firm would continue to seek investment opportunities despite Brexit. In particular, it was looking to grow its student housing portfolio, he said.
Earlier this year, it purchased Exeter One, a scheme next to the University of Exeter, for £18.6m, reflecting a 5.9% yield. Judd said it was the first deal in an investment programme to build a student portfolio of more than £200m of assets.
90 North also recently capitalised on strong demand for long-income property in the UK by selling a portfolio of 12 care homes leased to Prime Life in two separate deals to AEW UK Long Lease REIT and LXi REIT for £50.6m.