Established for over 200 years, Watkin Jones is one of the UK’s leading property development companies involved in two of the hottest areas of residential real estate, namely the purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) and private rented sector (PRS) segments.
The fundamentals for both markets are positive and Watkin Jones is very well positioned to grow market share and profits despite operating a very low risk and working capital light business model.
The long term fundamentals for the purpose built student accommodation sector are very positive with growing student numbers, strong demand for quality accommodation and institutional investors hungry for exposure. In PBSA, Watkin Jones enjoys excellent visibility of revenues, profits and cashflow through a combination of a strong development pipeline and a forward sales model. It also has an exceptionally good delivery track record and of gaining planning consents
The company's Fresh Student Living business offers vertical integration for the company within the student accommodation market and offers an end-to-end solution for institutional investors. The revenue growth opportunity, long-term nature of contracts and high margins within this business are very attractive.
The business is very well positioned to take advantage of continued rising demand for developments within the private rented sector. The company aims to operate along the same lines as its PBSA business, by developing a strong pipeline and forward selling to institutions. The growth opportunity could be significant in the medium term.
The recently established PRS asset management business, Five Nine Living aims to manage both Watkin Jones developed schemes and external portfolios. Again, the medium term growth opportunity in this space is significant.