Malaysia’s $35b pension fund KWAP buys two student housing properties in UK for $51m

Residential Kuala Lumpur at sunrise. Photo: Pixabay

Malaysia’s civil service pension fund Kumpulan Wang Persaraan (Diperbadankan) (KWAP) has purchased two purpose-built student accomodation buildings in the UK for £39.75 million ($51.2 million), it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The properties purchased were a four-storey freehold building at 800 Bristol Road in Birmingham, and a six-storey freehold building, The Mill House, in Edinburgh, priced at £14.62 million and £25.13 million, respectively.

Both properties are student housing spaces, located close to the University of Birmingham, University of Edinburgh, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh Napier University and Queen Margaret University.

KWAP said, the estimated average net yield of both properties is at 5.08 per cent. The properties were acquired from IP Investment Management (HK) Ltd and Maven Capital Partners.

“The acquisition aligns with KWAP’s aspirations to increase its international property exposure. We will continue to grow our presence in foreign markets without compromising on our risk appetite, in line with our mission to serve the pensioners of Malaysia,” said KWAP CEO, Wan Kamaruzaman Wan Ahmad.

The purchase of both properties brings the total number of properties under KWAP’s portfolio to 14, with other properties located in Australia, London and Germany. As of December 31, 2017, 75 per cent of KWAP’s property portfolio are made up of foreign properties while the remaining are local assets.

According to KWAP, the purchase of the properties was under the pension fund’s strategic asset allocation, which current stands at 40 per cent fixed income, 45 per cent equity, and 15 per cent alternative investments. The property portfolio takes up about 9 per cent of the alternative allocation, followed by private equity at 4 per cent and infrastructure at 2 per cent.

Established in 1991, KWAP is Malaysia’s second largest retirement fund and has total assets under management of RM140.8 billion ($34.8 billion).

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.