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Share Name Share Symbol Market Type Share ISIN Share Description
Unite Group Plc LSE:UTG London Ordinary Share GB0006928617 ORD 25P
  Price Change % Change Share Price Shares Traded Last Trade
  -26.00 -2.34% 1,083.00 280,843 11:45:34
Bid Price Offer Price High Price Low Price Open Price
1,082.00 1,084.00 1,095.00 1,074.00 1,082.00
Industry Sector Turnover (m) Profit (m) EPS - Basic PE Ratio Market Cap (m)
Real Estate Investment & Services 215.60 -120.10 -31.80 4,323
Last Trade Time Trade Type Trade Size Trade Price Currency
11:45:34 AT 472 1,083.00 GBX

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Trade Time Trade Price Trade Size Trade Value Trade Type
10:45:341,083.004725,111.76AT
10:45:341,083.001111,202.13AT
10:45:341,083.002562,772.48AT
10:45:341,084.001541,669.36AT
10:45:341,084.003003,252.00AT
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Unite (UTG) Top Chat Posts

DateSubject
30/6/2022
09:20
Unite Daily Update: Unite Group Plc is listed in the Real Estate Investment & Services sector of the London Stock Exchange with ticker UTG. The last closing price for Unite was 1,109p.
Unite Group Plc has a 4 week average price of 1,016p and a 12 week average price of 989p.
The 1 year high share price is 1,250p while the 1 year low share price is currently 934.80p.
There are currently 399,159,943 shares in issue and the average daily traded volume is 1,082,169 shares. The market capitalisation of Unite Group Plc is £4,350,843,378.70.
09/3/2022
20:35
maddox: Anyone reading my stream of consciousness on Unite will be familiar with my puzzlement as to why the share, which I regard as the most resilient, exhibits so much volatility? (Accepting Covid ofc which has obviously presented real tangible challenges) The explanation I have been offered is that I'm confusing the rationale for the seller with the fundamental attraction of the shares. Essentially, when the market collapses and investors in funds decide to exit the Fund Manager has to quickly find cash to redeem investors' holdings. In such circumstances the Fund Manager needs to sell a share that is liquid and has potential buyers prepared to pick-up the stock in large quantity - albeit at an attractive price. Unite's quality and resilience thus counts against it at such times - it's the ideal share to shift to raise cash quickly. OK, this is unproveable, I cannot look into the heads of those selling out of UTG because, for example, Russia invades Ukraine. Nevertheless, I can see the logic and it fits with a wider trend I've observed - the higher quality stocks fall furthest in a crash. (They also rise quickest and then perform more strongly.) So, a useful working hypothesis that I'll take onboard until a better explanation appears. Can you offer one? Regards, Maddox
08/3/2022
13:55
speedsgh: Unite Students to dispose of 11 properties - HTTPS://www.investegate.co.uk/unite-group-plc--utg-/rns/unite-students-to-dispose-of-11-properties/202203080700079899D/ ... The disposals are priced in line with prevailing book value, which reflects an NOI yield of 5.7%. The properties were treated as held for sale in the balance sheet as at 31 December 2021 and the disposal is incorporated into the Company's guidance for EPRA EPS of 41-43p for the 2022 financial year, which remains unchanged. Completion will occur on 15 March on four of the properties in the portfolio for £51 million (Unite share: £11 million). The completion of the remaining properties will occur on 31 August 2022. The disposals reduce see-through LTV to 25% on a pro forma basis, providing the Group with capacity to fund its £1 billion development pipeline and explore additional growth opportunities. Richard Smith, Chief Executive of Unite Students, commented: " We have now completed the disposal programme set out at the time of our acquisition of Liberty Living in 2019. These disposals have increased the focus of our portfolio in the strongest university cities and ensure our ability to sustain rental growth over a longer time horizon. Our balance sheet is also positioned for growth with the investment capacity to deliver our biggest ever secured development pipeline of £1 billion and pursue further opportunities to extend our best-in-class platform"
23/2/2022
18:46
maddox: Looking at the share price recently you'd think Putin had invaded Unite not Ukraine. Yes, a very strong recovery is in-progress and the outlook for academic year (AY) 2022/23 is highly positive. The development pipeline is at an all-time high of 6000 beds(c.£1bn in value) that will increase the weighting 44% towards London (35%). The dividends are recovering nicely with more to come as the Covid effect wears-off. With the LTV ratio at 29% UTG have huge headroom should any peachy PBSA portfolio become available for acquisition. On Covid IMHO the virus is following a clear evolutionary pathway where each new dominant variant is more infectious but less severe – making the likelihood of the emergence of a more serious variant highly unlikely. The 20+ different viruses that we refer to as 'the common cold' was each probably a deadly human pandemic in its time. So, I think that this threat is being over-exaggerated. Some interesting strategic opportunities/initiatives were revealed today: >> HMOs: The private landlord with Homes of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) rented to students is a specific target for UTG. UTG is already competitively priced with HMOs and landlords are now under significant new pressures to comply with energy efficiency standards. The cost of retrofitting insulation to old property to meet the minimum standards could be prohibitive. UTG have their electricity costs fully hedged in 2022 and 85% hedged for 2023, and gas (which accounts for less than 0.5% of rent) is hedged through 2023. HMO renters are unlikely to be as well protected from escalating energy prices. >> Premium segments: UTG are also trialling greater segmentation of their portfolio to target some more premium-priced segments. One of these is the recently graduated professional requiring City Centre accommodation a.k.a build-to-rent. This closely associated market vertical could become an important new market for Unite and definitely something to watch. So, a very welcome set of results and plenty of interesting growth opportunities in-sight. I'd recommend you listen to the replay of the presentation as there is far too many points of interest for me to only scratch the surface of in this summary: httPs://webcasting.brrmedia.co.uk/broadcast/preview/61a62ec07aad4f60e33f6620 Regards, Maddox
25/1/2022
10:07
maddox: Thanks Speedsgh, good news and the 7% initial yield on costs is higher than normal - although I'm not sure I understand the explanation? 'which reflects the lower risk associated for a project with planning approval already secured.' I presume it means they secured the land at a price which did not fully reflect the additional cost of taking it through the planning process?
24/1/2022
10:44
speedsgh: Acquisition of development site in Nottingham - HTTPS://www.investegate.co.uk/unite-group-plc--utg-/rns/acquisition-of-development-site-in-nottingham/202201240700132892Z/ Unite Students, the UK's leading owner, manager and developer of student accommodation, has acquired a consented 270-bed development site in Nottingham city centre. Total development costs for the scheme, which will open for the 2024/25 academic year, are estimated to be £34 million. The direct-let development is expected to deliver a yield on cost of 7%, which reflects the lower risk associated for a project with planning approval already secured. Unite already owns and manages c.1,900 student accommodation beds in Nottingham with a further 970 beds to be added in the city across the new city centre site and the Company's 700-bed consented development at Derby Road, due for delivery in 2023. The development will increase our presence in Nottingham city centre, adding to Curzon House, which was acquired as part of the Liberty Living portfolio in 2019. The scheme also provides an opportunity to segment our portfolio in the city by creating a more tailored offer for second, third year and postgraduate students. Nottingham is home to two high-quality universities, the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, serving 64,000 full-time students. Nottingham has seen a 20% increase in students seeking accommodation in recent years, creating a clear need for new high-quality, purpose-built homes. The newly acquired site is located in a prime location on Lower Parliament Street in the heart of the city centre, close to Nottingham Trent University's campus as well as the University of Nottingham's planned city centre campus development for final-year and postgraduate students. Nick Hayes, Group Property Director of Unite Students, commented : "Through this opportunity we are able to cater for the increased number of students wanting to attend the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, both located in a growing regional city. This commitment increases our secured pipeline to over £800 million, its highest ever level, and we continue to see opportunities to add further schemes in London and prime regional markets at attractive returns".
22/1/2022
08:52
maddox: Hi BELtd, For what is such an extremely resilient business model - it seems that the weather affects the Unite share price looking at the volatility. tbh I am always at a loss to rationalise the share price movements on a short term timeframe. Essentially, these gyrations provide a good opportunity to pick-up shares at a better price. UTG is recovering strongly and potential Uni deals and current development pipeline will grow the value of the business. This growth trajectory is itself highly resilient and 'guaranteed growth' should command a premium. At some point, but who knows when, this will undoubtedly be reflected in the share price. Regards, Maddox
11/1/2022
08:55
maddox: Very encouraging update on trading and valuations from Unite this morning. Good news on all fronts - trading, development pipeline and asset values. Current trading appears to be returning to normal levels despite the continuing Covid situation - which is fantastic news. Looking forward Unite are seeing strong demand for 2022/23 from both domestic and international students. They are not taking any chances on international students and are intending to retain their domestic students. UTG are clearly keen to hit their occupancy targets. Competition for prime city centre locations is more favourable for Unite in the wake of Covid. So, the pipeline will hopefully be expanded further with some juicy development opportunities. There is also strong investor demand for student accommodation as an asset class. This is leading to higher valuations and thus acceptance of lower yields - the 'yield compression' mentioned in the rns. Covid has highlighted the robust demand from young people for the university experience. On-line learning has its obvious advantages but Covid has also revealed its limitations. The 'right of passage' that a degree course at a university represents has been fully stress-tested and has come through strongly. The future outlook for Unite is looking very positive.
02/8/2021
11:32
maddox: UTG H1 Results - extremely solid. Covid has impacted income and thus also NAV so a double hit but UTG showing great resilience and this effect is starting to unwind. They also announced a new 1000 bed development in Stratford, London. Whilst, market recovery is underway with a return to face-to-face teaching we're not out of the woods yet. We've still to see the return of a fresh intake of international students and UK clearing out-turn to determine the final level of demand. A few Universities are saying they will continue with remote teaching - but I can't see that lasting - it's not what students want and if that is what's on offer they will go elsewhere. Just a couple of points I'll highlight. UTG's revenue is 80% covered by nomination agreements or UK students. Of the remaining 20% exposure to international students - a third of these are already in the UK. UTG have identified that student's top concern is climate change and are responding positively: UTG's development in Paddington is aiming for zero carbon rating. This green initiative will of course also enhance their ESG credentials. Unite is having to absorb additional costs to remove HPL cladding on some of their properties. They are looking to recover costs from the developers but this will probably take some time. University deals are under discussion - that should add additional NAV growth. The LSAV fund has capacity and are actively seeking more PBSA property in London. These deals take time to complete - so not expecting a rush of deals here. Funding is looking rock solid and Unite has the prospect of further reducing the cost of its debt. LTV is a conservative 30% giving capacity to fund further deals and/or developments. So we're on course for a full recovery and UTG are extremely well positioned for further growth - accepting that Covid may have further twists in its tail. Regards Maddox
11/7/2021
11:58
maddox: Hi madengland, That's not something that I typically do - the share price will reflect a share's intrinsic value in the long-term but is determined by the market sentiment of buyers and sellers at any particular point in time. A point in time price prediction is beyond me. I'll thus reframe my answer to your question. I expect UTG to hit 1400p once it becomes clear that international students can return and teaching is back to normal. We have yet to see the full benefit of the Liberty acquisition reflected in the figures. As an asset class uncorrelated with the economy I foresee it becoming highly appealing to FIs.
25/2/2021
17:34
maddox: My StockSlam pick is a property company specialising in Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) –called Unite (LON:UTG) . It is by far the largest in this sector with c. 75,000 beds a Mkt Cap £3.4bn and features in the FT250. Its shares peaked at £13.38 in Feb 2020 but was then hit by Covid-19 and is now down at 963p (down about 27%). This price I think presents a good short-term buying opportunity with the end of Covid restrictions in sight. Student Accommodation is a resilient investment, its asset backed and its market is uncorrelated with the general economy. Student Accommodation was the best performing property asset class during the Global Economic Crisis of 2008/9. One of Unite’s strengths is that 55% of its beds are guaranteed to be occupied by its agreement with Universities. Unite (LON:UTG) is a REIT (Real Estate Income Trust), which allows exemption from UK corporation tax on its rental profits and to qualify as a REIT it has to distribute 90% of its income to investors by way of dividends. Which should be attractive to income seekers, but Unite's yield is relatively low, this is because it is expected to grow, both by its development pipeline and also by acquisition. It took over the markets' third largest player Liberty Living in 2019. The Covid Impact: Covid-19 has hit Unite’s business - they released students from their contracts very early on, also given discounts and rental free periods. Typically, they would achieve 98% occupancy – but managed only 89% in 2020. So Covid has hit its income and consequently its property values have fallen. Unite has published a Student Survey this morning: https://www.investegate.co.uk/... The findings are: >> 77% students struggled with mental health and wellbeing as a result of Covid-19, but 84% say engaging in university life has been positive for their mental health; >> Students' biggest challenge this year is the lack of face-to-face teaching, practical experience or facilities; >> Traditional face-to-face university experience is key for students: 86% are keen to get onto university campus once it is safe to do so; 75% agree that living in university accommodation and being on campus is as important a part of the university experience as lectures and tutorials; and >> Four in five (79%) students would like a return to face-to-face tuition after the Easter break. This based on a survey of 2000 students. Covid-19 has been very instructive: It has demonstrated just how robust the demand is for the 'university experience'. Going to University is clearly a culturally entrenched 'right of passage' for the UK's young adults. It has often been postulated that on-line learning would disrupt this tradition. Covid-19 has provided the opportunity to test this hypothesis. Whilst, on-line learning has clearly allowed teaching to continue during the Covid-19 Lockdowns - it is certainly not a substitute for the uni experience. Students want the 'real-life' full-fat university experience - it's not just about learning (https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/...) ;-) These are two extremely significant points for anyone assessing the risks of investing in this sector. So, I’m expecting a full recovery in demand once Covid-19 restrictions are removed. The market back-ground is supportive: The market is under-supplied, there is a short-fall of c. 243k beds of those required for first years and international students - that universities like of offer 'in-hall' accommodation. Secondly demand is growing: Demographics are positive - the number of 17/18 year olds is increasing - and, a higher proportion of them are opting to go to university. The Government has at long last recognised the value of international students to the UK. The Govt has changed the rules to now allow foreign students studying in the UK to stay-on to work for a further two years. Also, the Govt are targeting to increase the number of international students by c. 33% to 600k by 2030 - from c. 450k previously. In addition to income Unite also offers growth: It has a development pipeline of 5000+ new beds to be delivered by 2024. It raised £300m in June 2020 by way of a placing at 870p – now you might think that this was to repair the balance sheet – but no it was to take advantage of depressed land prices and fund the acquisition of three more prime development sites. It has a strong balance sheet with a 33% debt to asset value ratio. To summarise: Covid-19 presents the opportunity to get on-board this high quality REIT that offers the prospects of both growth and income. With the end of Covid restrictions now in-sight I’m expecting to see a full recovery in demand for Unite's accommodation and a bounce in the share price. But, due to its resilient market, this is a share I’m very happy to hold in the face of a possible UK recession. Maddox (Declaration: I am very long Unite (LON:UTG)) ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// and in answer to some questions: Watkin Jones (LON:WJG) is a great business but I haven't invested. I particularly like that they de-risk their business by pre-selling their developments and thus finance their developments using the customer's cash - perfect. I favour Unite (LON:UTG) because it retains its developed PBSA assets and is thus inexorably growing in size and efficiency. WJG OTOH has to keep expanding its development operations in order to grow - this will at some point cause difficulties. £UTG has a further advantage over Empiric Student Property (LON:ESP) and CPG Student Living (LON:DIGS) in its unique capital structure that provides substantially greater financial deal capacity. Its property development and management company is supported by two own managed property funds. This distinguishes it strategically from it's competitors, the funds are: USAF £2.8bn – Unite own c.22%; and LSAV £1.3bn – Unite own 50%. This means that Unite (LON:UTG) is not restrained by its own balance sheet debt capacity (a conservative 33% debt to value), once the yield on a developed property matures it can sell the property into the funds and re-finance its development pipeline. The funds can also be leveraged in takeovers, such as Aston University's Campus and Liberty Living. The financial firepower that this structure provides is a key strategic advantage in what is likely to be a consolidating sector. \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ Cladding - Grenfell tragedy Unite have been hit by this dreadful scandal but are in a good position to quickly fix it. They have 19 buildings with unsafe cladding, which will be removed within the next 12 months at a total estimated cost of about £15 - £20m.
Unite share price data is direct from the London Stock Exchange
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