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Industrial developer announces £100m fund targeted at multi-let sector
July 24, 2019

Warrington-based industrial developer and asset manager Chancerygate has partnered with property-focused investment company JR Capital to raise a £100m fund for investment in the UK multi-let industrial sector. The first close of the fund has raised £25m of equity from London-based JR Capital’s Middle East-based private and institutional client base, giving Chancerygate an immediate £50m to deploy, including within the North West. Further closes are anticipated shortly. The fund has a five-year life and will target multi-let industrial investments across the UK in lot sizes of £5m to £15m. Chancerygate and JR Capital have also announced the fund’s first acquisition. Brunswick Park is a nine-unit industrial and warehouse development in Newcastle-upon-Tyne totalling 71,700 sq ft, which was purchased for £3.3m. The fund will invest in improvements across the property and generate new income by bringing the three acres of vacant land into use as open storage. Chancerygate’s Warrrington-based asset manager, David Tyson, said: “A key aspect of our growth strategy is to further increase the size of our asset management business. “Our partnership with JR Capital and the funds raised will play a significant role in achieving that objective, so we are delighted to have achieved a first close in a challenging fund-raising environment. “The fund will allow us to add to the mandates our asset management team already has from the likes of Bridges Fund Management, Carlisle City Council and Patrizia.” The strategy of the fund is to assemble a geographically diversified portfolio of assets across the UK, generate secure income from a highly diversified tenant base and add value through active asset management. Both JR Capital and Chancerygate are co-investing into the new fund. JR Capital managing director, John Collier-Wright, said: “We believe the multi-let industrial sector is still undervalued. “It offers relatively high yielding and well diversified income which is attractive in the current environment. The sector is one of very few which has real potential for growth over the short to medium term, underpinned by key macro fundamentals. “There is a lack of supply of small to mid-sized industrial units across the UK, coupled with an ever-increasing demand from a better-quality tenant base. The shift to online commerce and the need for storage and last-mile logistics space will inevitably continue to drive demand and rents.” He added: “Our clients continue to have a strong appetite for UK commercial property, and they see the defensive nature of this asset class as a hedge against the continued uncertainty surrounding Brexit.” At present, Chancerygate oversees £220m of assets nationwide across more than 4.9m sq ft of commercial space in 355 industrial, retail, office and leisure units. In April the company announced the appointment of asset manager, George Jerram, who joined from Square Metre Asset Management. Chancerygate director and head of asset management, Rory Finnan, added: “The investment case for the multi-let industrial sector remains compelling with supply diminishing and demand remaining strong, despite the challenges of Brexit. “Achieving £25m at first close on a £100m fund is testament to this and also reflects our track record as a successful industrial developer and asset manager.” JR Capital is an FCA-registered multi-family office business with a focus on UK and European real estate. It provides a platform for its Middle East-based private and institutional clients to co-invest into both UK and European real estate. Founded in 2005 by John Collier-Wright it has concluded more than £2bn of transactions across all sectors. Michael Ferris, head of investment at JR Capital, said: “With significant increases in online shopping, we expect this structural shift in the way we consume to continue to have an impact on demand for regional light industrial, warehousing and distribution assets over the next cycle. “We are also attracted to the granular nature of the tenant base and the fact it’s the cheapest commercial space on the market, both of which in our view make it a highly defensive strategy. “Chancerygate has an outstanding reputation within the industrial property sector and we are looking forward to working with them on this exciting new venture.” While Chancerygate’s asset management business is set for growth, its industrial development arm is also expanding rapidly. This year the business will triple its completed developments compared with the previous year, delivering more than one million sq ft across 13 schemes compared with 340,000 sq ft in 2018. Founded in 1995, Chancerygate is the UK’s largest multi-unit developer with developments ranging from Livingston, West Lothian, to Poole, Dorset. In addition to its Warrington base, Chancerygate also has offices in London, Birmingham and Milton Keynes.

Liverpool City Region gets £19m growth boost funding
July 24, 2019

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF), delivered by British Business Bank, has invested more than £11m into ambitious, high-growth small and medium-sized businesses in the Liverpool City Region in deals that have attracted an additional £8.2m invested from the private sector. Since its launch in February 2017, NPIF has delivered equity finance, debt finance, and microfinance solutions, ranging in size from £25,000 to £2m to businesses across the 10 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEP) that make up the ‘Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund’ region. To date, NPIF has completed 58 investments in Liverpool City Region-based small and medium-sized businesses in a wide a range of sectors including manufacturing, digital technologies and life sciences. Notable investments include Simul Software, which creates innovative solutions in real-time rendering, initially aimed at the games and simulation markets. The company has secured a £150,000 investment from NPIF–Maven Equity Finance, managed by Maven Capital Partners working with MSIF in the Liverpool City Region. The investment will be used for the development of its VR technology, ‘SimulCaster’. The aim is to showcase the concept at the TechCrunch Disrupt event in October. NPIF also invested in Wirral-based DT & G, which supplies chocolate coating and polishing machines to confectionery manufacturers worldwide. The company has a 50-year heritage and sought £100,000 funding from NPIF-FW Capital Debt Finance, managed by FW Capital, to support the development of its latest machinery, ‘Finn2’ which offers a modernised, more hygienic system for customers. The investment will also enable DT & G to employ additional staff to assist in the management of its customer portfolio. Further, Knowsley-based DosaFil, which designs, manufactures and delivers innovative high-quality water conditioning equipment, secured £75,000 of funding from NPIF–BFS & MSIF Microfinance, managed by MSIF in partnership with GC Business Finance. The funding will enable the firm to invest in a marketing function and additional raw materials. Janice Mears, head of business growth for the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership said: “NPIF has provided valuable support to our business community since its launch in 2017 and it is fantastic to see the impact it is having on unlocking business potential and creating jobs in the city region. “To continue this momentum, we are working closely with the fund managers and existing providers to ensure there is a simple joined up approach for business, through the local growth hub.” Ken Cooper, managing director at British Business Bank, said: “The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund’s performance in the Liverpool City Region highlights that there are ambitious businesses here that are rising to the challenge of taking on funding for new projects and products. “An increasing number of these growing companies are taking advantage of the finance options available through NPIF which will help drive economic prosperity in the North of England.” The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.

Shipyard encourages more women to consider engineering career
July 11, 2019

Birkenhead shipyard Cammell Laird will open its doors to young women in a special event next week to encourage female engineers. The world-famous shipbuilder and neighbouring Engineering College have joined forces to showcase the work of female engineers to students from sixth forms in the area to mark International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) on June 28. The guests will embark on a tour of polar research vessel RRS Sir David Attenborough, currently being built at the shipyard, as well as hearing about life at Cammell Laird from several of its top staff. The event comes as Cammell Laird prepares to launch a recruitment drive for apprentices and aims to demonstrate the world of opportunities available in engineering. Cammell Laird chief operating officer Tony Graham urged local women interested in learning more about engineering careers to register for the event. “Cammell Laird has always had a strong female presence across departments of the company,” he said. “However, we do want to encourage more young women to think of engineering as a career and this event will give a real insight into what it is like to work here. “Engineering is now more open than it has ever been to women and we have a number of female engineers who are flourishing in their jobs who will be giving presentations. “Engineering offers a varied, rewarding career for women with an opportunity to grow and stretch themselves undertaking fascinating work.” He added: “Cammell Laird is one of the most exciting places to work in our region and our female engineers play an important role bringing a different outlook, as well as skills. Women engineers and female workers make Cammell Laird a better business and we very much look forward to showcasing what we have to offer.” Terry Weston, chief executive of the Engineering College, said: “We want to send out the message that engineering isn’t gender specific and that there are endless opportunities for anyone within our industry. “The college offers training in the heavy side of engineering but also in clean engineering – more office-based roles – as well. “There’s a massive misconception that engineering is all carried out outdoors or in a workshop, with heavy machinery, so we’re trying to highlight the other routes an engineering career can take you down. “We look for people interested in maths and science, but also those who are good at communicating and problem solving, and this day is about changing perceptions by saying that it doesn’t matter what you look like, it’s all about how you are in those areas.”