Union #, Vita Group, P.planning Documents
The pair of towers were approved in 2020. Credit: planning documents

Vita strikes £191m funding deal for Manchester co-living 

Dan Whelan

Cain International and PGIM Real Estate have agreed the development loan to finance the construction of Union, Vita Group’s two-tower scheme at Allied London’s Enterprise City. 

Cain will provide £148m to fund the scheme and PGIM Real Estate will contribute an additional £43m of the £191m total. 

Construction of the towers is underway, with Renaker appointed as main contractor. 

Located on Water Street within Allied London’s £1bn St John’s district, Union will create 1,676 bed-spaces, 131 of which will be offered on affordable tenures. 

Tower one is expected to complete in spring 2024 and Tower two is expected to complete in the summer of 2025. The scheme was designed by Denton Corker Marshall.

Mark Stott, Vita Group chief executive, said: “Union has been designed to mobilise the next generation of young professionals creating a product that provides the perfect blend of amenity, service, and space in a sought-after location and at a price which is accessible.” 

Vita Group has a track record for delivering city centre residential schemes through its Vita Student and Vita Living brands. 

Vita Student operates 7,129 student beds in the UK including 1,100 at Circle Square in Manchester. Within the same development, Vita Living operates a 683-unit BTR scheme. 

Vita Co Living, Vita, P.planning Docs

The base of tower one, designed by Denton Corker Marshall. Credit: via planning documents

“Having financial partners Cain and PGIM Real Estate onboard with this project ensures Vita can focus on future developments and growth opportunities,” Stott added. 

Graham Keable, Principal at Cain International, said: “We have been steadily increasing our exposure to key UK markets in recent years, as we find the fundamentals supporting higher education and BTR in UK cities to be highly attractive for our strategy.” 

This loan builds on the expansion of Cain’s debt offering to key regional cities in the UK, now totalling more than £320m with Vita. Cain funding also includes schemes in Warwick, Coventry and Cardiff having first partnered with the group in 2020. 

Meanwhile, the loan from PGIM is the company’s thirteenth investment with Vita Group. 

Andrew Macland, head of european debt at PGIM Real Estate, said: “Union represents an exciting opportunity for any financier – a prime location mixed with an exciting product delivered by a business with a proven track record for creating stand-out BTR and PBSA.” 

Elsewhere within St John’s, 320 hotel rooms, 560,000 sq ft of office space, 240,000 sq ft of retail and 13 acres of public realm are in the pipeline. 

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