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UTG Unite Group Plc

6.50 (0.66%)
05 Dec 2023 - Closed
Delayed by 15 minutes
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
  6.50 0.66% 990.50 960,148 16:29:40
Bid Price Offer Price High Price Low Price Open Price
989.50 990.50 1,005.00 978.50 978.50
Industry Sector Turnover Profit EPS - Basic PE Ratio Market Cap
Real Estate Agents & Mgrs 259.3M 355.1M 0.8821 11.23 3.99B
Last Trade Time Trade Type Trade Size Trade Price Currency
18:12:55 O 418 990.50 GBX

Unite (UTG) Latest News

Unite (UTG) Discussions and Chat

Unite (UTG) Most Recent Trades

Trade Time Trade Price Trade Size Trade Value Trade Type
2023-12-05 18:13:09990.504184,140.29O
2023-12-05 18:12:42985.00100985.00O
2023-12-05 18:02:54990.503723,684.66O
2023-12-05 17:55:01987.901161,145.97O
2023-12-05 17:55:01993.63219.87O

Unite (UTG) Top Chat Posts

Top Posts
Posted at 05/12/2023 08:20 by Unite Daily Update
Unite Group Plc is listed in the Real Estate Agents & Mgrs sector of the London Stock Exchange with ticker UTG. The last closing price for Unite was 984p.
Unite currently has 402,581,000 shares in issue. The market capitalisation of Unite is £3,987,564,805.
Unite has a price to earnings ratio (PE ratio) of 11.23.
This morning UTG shares opened at 978.50p
Posted at 24/10/2023 22:59 by maddox
Ha Ha I assume your post is aimed at Blackhorse-down strawberry. I doubt he'll see your post as he's posted widely and indiscriminately to try and support his latest trade.

I follow WJG as operating in PBSA, as I also follow ESP and DIGS, but not invested. He started ramping around 20 Sep, WJG share price c. 41p so about 12% down currently.

Unlike UTG, WJG are solely focussed on property development which is suffering due to high interest rates that means no one wants to buy their developments. If WJG can pull through into a more benign interest environment then they are probably a steal at the moment - but too risky for me.
Posted at 13/9/2023 12:14 by speedsgh
New 800-bed development in Glasgow -

Unite Students, the UK's leading owner, manager and developer of student accommodation, today announces that it has entered an option agreement to acquire a new 800-bed development scheme in central Glasgow, subject to planning.

The new development will help address the acute shortage of student accommodation in Glasgow, which is home to three institutions within the UK's top 75 universities, and increases Unite's portfolio in the city to 3,000 beds. The Group expects to deliver the scheme as a university partnership with at least half of the beds to be let on a multi-year nominations agreement to a leading university.

The scheme has a total development cost of £95 million and is expected to deliver a yield on cost of around 7.5%. Planning approval is targeted during H1 2024, enabling delivery for the 2026/27 academic year. The Group expects to fund the project from capital recycling through disposals.

Development pipeline update

We have continued to make good progress on delivery of our committed development pipeline since our interim results. Morriss House in Nottingham reached practical completion in August and is fully let for the 2023/24 academic year.

Following our £300 million equity issue, work has started on-site at our Temple Quarter development in Bristol. The planning process for Meridian Square in Stratford is also progressing in line with expectations with approval targeted in Q4 2023.

Michael Burt, Unite Students Group Investment Director, commented:

"Our latest development will create new supply of high quality, affordable student accommodation in Glasgow to support the continued growth of our university partners. We are also making good progress in delivering the two new developments funded from the proceeds of our recent capital raise. Our development pipeline now totals 5,600 beds in the strongest university cities, as we work to address the urgent need for new student housing at a time when the private rental sector is in retreat."
Posted at 25/7/2023 17:31 by maddox
Yes, £300m raised at 905p and the share price has recovered closing at 962p - so a nice 6.3% gain for subscribers - £4m of which was retail money. We now have a healthy £600m development pipeline, rising rents and some (at long last) Uni deals to look forward to.
Posted at 25/7/2023 12:53 by speedsgh
It seems Unite had little trouble in raising the £300m they were looking for. I can't say that I am surprised.
Posted at 24/7/2023 16:23 by maddox
After market close - UTG have just released their 1H23 Results and are looking to raise £300m via a placing and separate retail offer via Primary Bid. The funds will be used:

'The Placing will enable Unite to continue to invest in its market-leading platform and enhance future earnings growth. The Company intends to use the net proceeds of the Capital Raise (the "Net Proceeds") to commit to two new PBSA development schemes and accelerate asset management initiatives to enhance future returns.'

'Background to the Capital Raise' - Selective edits - link below.

'The Board believes the current market environment offers a compelling multi-year opportunity to accelerate the Company's growth.'

'structural factors continue to drive a demand/supply imbalance for the Company's product. Demographic growth will see the population of UK 18-year-olds increase by 140,000 (19%) by 2030. Application rates to university have also grown steadily over recent years, reflecting the value young adults place on a higher level of education and the life experience and opportunities it offers. Demand from international students also continues to grow, as reflected in the 2% increase in undergraduate applications for the 2023/24 academic year.'

'The Company also sees opportunities to secure new development opportunities at attractive returns and is in advanced discussions for a number of schemes in London and prime regional markets. Moreover, the Company has seen a growing willingness from universities to explore more strategic options to grow and improve their accommodation offer, given the vital role it plays in helping them to attract and grow student numbers. This includes a number of advanced discussions for strategic partnerships with universities for the development of new accommodation on- and off-campus, as well as the stock transfer and refurbishment of existing university accommodation.'

I've been anticipating the Unis to be looking for partnerships for a long time - looks like it might now be happening.
Posted at 10/7/2023 06:56 by maddox
A highly positive Q2 trading update from Unite just published:

Richard Smith, Unite Students Chief Executive Officer, commented:

"Reservations for the 2023/24 academic year remain at record levels, with 98% of rooms now sold, reflecting strong demand from both students and universities and the attractiveness of our fixed-priced all-inclusive offer. This supports an improvement in our rental growth guidance to around 7% for the 2023/24 academic year. Our strong leasing performance will continue to support our property valuations as the market adjusts to an environment of higher interest rates."

The strong demand has lifted the value of the two property funds that UTG manages and partly ownes, these are:

>> USAF – Unite own 28.2% - like-for-like asset value increased 1.2% during the quarter; and

>> LSAV – Unite own 50% - like-for-like asset value increased 1.1% during the quarter.

The performance isn't being reflected in the share price as Financial Institutions move their money out of the UK stock market and into fixed rate investments; attracted by the rising interest rates. On Friday's close of 847p the prospective yield is 4.38% currently. Last Wednesday's UK Gilt auction priced the latest issue maturing in 2025 at 5.668% - the highest rate since 2007. So, yield seekers have a no risk alternative home for their funds. However, UTG offers growth and a growing yield which Gilts don't - so the attraction is short-term.

The high demand for student property, widening undersupply and attractive yield on development underpins a long-term growth trajectory for Unite.
Posted at 12/4/2023 09:44 by maddox
Highly positive Q1 trading update today:

Richard Smith, Unite Students Chief Executive Officer, commented:

" We continue to make strong progress with bookings for the 2023/24 academic year with 90% of rooms already sold, demonstrating the strength of student demand and the attractiveness of our fixed-priced all-inclusive offer. Reservations are significantly ahead of recent sales cycles, reflecting strong demand from both new and existing students as well as new nomination agreements with universities. This progress reinforces our confidence in delivering rental growth of 6-7% for the 2023/24 academic year. Rental growth also continues to support our property valuations as the market adjusts to a higher funding cost environment.
The supply of purpose-built student accommodation cannot keep pace with growing student demand at the same time as HMO landlords are leaving the sector. We are therefore tracking a number of new development opportunities at attractive returns, which we are uniquely positioned to deliver through our university relationships and development capability. "

Picking-out the key points:

>> Demand is out-stripping supply: the implication is full-utilisation can be anticipated looking at the forward bookings.

>> Pricing power: UTG is able to increase rents to mitigate inflation and interest rate rises. Despite the rises UTG is very competitively priced due to wider market rental price acceleration. Pricing power is extremely important for investors in an inflationary economic environment.

>> Development Pipeline: IMHO the pressure is mounting on Unis to resolve the growing accommodation crisis. This will provide the long-anticipated partnership opportunities for UTG. Something to keep an eye on.

Hopefully, with the development cost-pressures ameliorating we will see a further acceleration in the development pipeline - to meet the evident demand. Whilst pressures on yield cause property valuations to pause - new development and partnership deals are the likely pathway to growth.
Posted at 23/3/2023 11:02 by maddox
Thanks speedsgh,

I'd refer back to my post 856 on 28 Feb. Demand for PSBR is rising faster than it's being built whilst HMO provision is falling. I expect the pace of build to recover this year but it'll clearly take many years to close the undersupply.

One contributing factor is that students and PBSA appear to be unpopular - leading to difficulty gaining planning permission. This is a problem for UTG as for other developers in meeting the huge demand.
Posted at 20/3/2023 08:44 by maddox
Just thought I'd point out as we are amid a banking crisis: Back in 2008/9 Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) was a relatively new and novel asset class. It then became the best performing real estate asset class through the Global Economic Crisis (GEC).

PBSA is in huge demand and undersupply so highly resilient and also has a key strength in being uncorrelated with the general economy. That is not to say that the share price will reflect this - the huge share price volatility UTG exhibits is in stark contrast to its resilient qualities. I've concluded that this more reflects its investors than UTG as a business.

In 2008/9 I was thus able to buy at that time at around 50% of Net Asset Value.
Posted at 04/3/2023 20:40 by maddox
I'd recommend any browsers to look at the UTG results webinar, lots of great background:

Despite the current prevailing market gloom there is a very reassuring positive note in this webinar. For a start the accompanying presentation is titled 'Positioned for Growth':

As mentioned the market demand is very supportive and UTG sees opportunity of growth across three areas:

>> Internal investment: Up-grading and segmenting the existing portfolio delivering a target 7% on investment;

>> Pipeline of new development: 2123 beds (committed) and 2740 beds (not yet committed) and with additional Uni partnerships; and

>> New Buy-to-Rent(BtR)initiative: A new pillar for growth catering to young professionals (more to research on this one).

Based on this UTG are guiding to delivering an 8-10% accounting return. I'd suggest that UTG are very confident of being able to achieve that based on the core opportunities. If they do well and manage to land a few additional Uni opportunities and I'm sure they'll be aiming to beat that.

A few other observations:

The Uni. of Manchester has appointed three professional services consultancies to consult on a major investment and development strategy for its student accommodation. Real Estate Advisors CBRE will be supported by law firm Pinsent Masons and corporate finance advisors QMPF will advise on finance. Seems like a fairly comprehensive strategic review. Incidentally, UTG has just refurbished three sites in Manchester tailoring them for different customer groups.

The BtR Sector looks attractive - CEO Matt Hutchinson is reporting that rents are rising faster than they've ever seen: 'we've been running Spareroom for nearly 20 years now. And we've never seen the rental market like it's been in the past 18 months. There's a sort of perfect storm of dwindling supply, incredible demand. And as a result, rents are going up and so paying record highs everywhere across the UK'. (BBCR4 Money Box 4Mar23) This probably explains UTG's new initiative in this area.

Readers of Chronic Investors need to be careful of their sloppy analysis. A highlight bullet point states that UTG's 2022 revenue has fallen on 2021. Correct but not fully explained - 2021 revenue included a £42m performance fee from their fund management activities - whereas rental revenue grew 15.6% y-o-y and adjusted earnings attributable to shareholders +48% and dividends also +48%.
Unite share price data is direct from the London Stock Exchange

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