BLP and DLA take lead on Blackstone’s £400m student digs sale

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) and DLA Piper were the lead firms on Blackstone’s £400m sale of its Nido Student Living business to Round Hill Capital – one of the largest real estate deals so far this year.

Chris de Pury
Chris de Pury

The sale was funded through a consortium of senior and mezzanine providers – including M&G investments and Coral Student Portfolio – and saw Round Hill acquire a portfolio comprising 2,526 beds across student sites in King’s Cross, Notting Hill and Spitalfields.

BLP advised Round Hill on all aspects of the deal, which included the financing, structuring and tax issues. Real estate partner Chris de Pury, who is the firm’s relationship partner for Round Hill, led on the deal. Commercial real estate partner Deepa Deb and real estate finance partners Laurence Rogers and Steve Clark also advised on the deal, as did corporate finance partner Adam Bogdanor and tax partners Neville Wright and Elizabeth Bradley.

PiscoPartners, Ogier and Loyens & Loeff advised the company on Maltese, Jersey and Luxembourg tax issues respectively.

DLA Piper, led by real estate partner Joanne Owen and corporate partner Ed Griffiths, acted for Blackstone. DLA Piper has worked with Blackstone on its Nido business since the brand was established seven years ago. DLA Piper has advised on land acquisitions for each student site and then on the development and funding of these.

Student accommodation has proved a fertile ground for real estate lawyers of late. In March Olswang and Pinsent Masons won roles on the £300m refinancing of student accommodation provider Liberty Living (2 March 2012). In September 2011 Eversheds acted for Legal & General Property on its £116m purchase of Battersea-based strudent accommodation Griffon Studios from Berkeley First and Imperial College London, which were advised by Ashurst (19 September 2011).