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Jones Lang LaSalle in Australia follows in the footsteps of its UK and US businesses to establish a presence in this sector of the market which is set to grow over the next 5 years
AUSTRALIA, 6 AUGUST 2012 – With demand for purpose-built student accommodation growing across Australia as student numbers increase consistently year-on-year, global investors, developers and operators are keenly looking at this sector of the market.
Australia’s largest real estate services firm, Jones Lang LaSalle has established a Student Accommodation Services business to assist clients and investors in the expected growth in investment opportunities in this sector.
Stephen Conry, CEO of Jones Lang LaSalle Australia said the firm had made the decision to specialise in this area to assist an increasing number of clients in this sector and off the back of the global growth in this investment class.
“Jones Lang LaSalle in Australia already has a strong focus on ‘social infrastructure’ services which includes sectors such as retirement living, health and aged care, social and affordable housing and child care.
“We see student accommodation as another sector which naturally fits under this wider umbrella of social infrastructure and we believe that our clients will be seeking to invest in funds or assets of this nature to further diversify their portfolios,” said Mr Conry.
Jones Lang LaSalle’s focus on social infrastructure is led by National Director Noral Rich. Noral re-joined the firm in 2011, following 9 years’ experience in the social infrastructure industry at Ernst and Young.
Ms Rich said, “The student accommodation model has become significantly more sophisticated in recent years and Australia is now beginning to see the ‘real’ student accommodation model take presence.
“Our new Student Accommodation Services team will work with our global colleagues to assess investment opportunities for our global clients seeking to expand and grow in the Australian market.
“The student accommodation sector has come a long way from the days of selling off small residential units on guaranteed returns through leases to students. The model now is a much more sophisticated product that includes both the physical asset and the operational business. Despite a traditional reluctance by super funds and institutional investors to invest in the ‘residential’ asset class, the student accommodation model is now attractive to these groups due to higher yields and security of income,” concluded Ms Rich.
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