CDL expands UK portfolio with the acquisition of 1NQ BTR

Further expanding its UK portfolio across major British cities, City Developments Limited (CDL) has acquired 1NQ - a Build to Rent project in Manchester.

CGI of the 1NQ Build to Rent development in Manchester, acquired by CDL | BTR News
CGI of the 1NQ Build to Rent development in Manchester, acquired by CDL.

Singapore-based global real estate company CDL Group expands its UK private rented sector (PRS) portfolio with the acquisition of 1NQ – a forward funding freehold Build to Rent project – for £75.6m.

Full planning permission was obtained in October, with CDL planning to develop the site into two new-build ten and 12-storey apartment blocks delivering 261 units – a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, alongside two commercial units on the ground floor. 1NQ is expected to reach completion in 2026. Construction is planned to start this month.

The scheme is located near Piccadilly Station, along Tariff Street and Port Street in the Northern Quarter, within the Piccadilly Basin neighbourhood of Manchester. 1NQ is close to several amenities such as cafes, bars, restaurants, gyms and independent retailers. It is only an eight-minute walk to Piccadilly Station and a 14-minute walk to Victoria Station.

The scheme is one of the last few residential sites available for development in the Northern Quarter, ranked by Time Out magazine as ‘one of the coolest neighbourhoods on earth’ in 2022. By day, the Northern Quarter is a bustling area for start-ups, creatives and digital companies, and by night, it transforms into a leisure scene with restaurants, bars, pop-up events and live music.

“Despite an uncertain macroeconomic environment, our PRS assets have shown resilience and strong growth potential. We have continued to scale up our global living sector portfolio to drive growth in our recurring income. This year, our Group’s global PRS portfolio has grown by almost 70% to 4,489 operational and pipeline units in the UK, Japan, Australia and the US, up from 2,640 units last year. 1NQ marks CDL’s first UK PRS acquisition under a forward-funding arrangement, which enables us to secure our investment at a fixed cost, manage our cash flows over the development period and benefit from potential capital appreciation.” 

Sherman Kwek, Chief Executive Officer, CDL Group

1NQ is the company’s fourth PRS development in the UK since 2019. The first development within CDL’s UK PRS presence was the acquisition of a development site for a 665-unit Build to Rent scheme in Leeds called The Junction, which launched in December 2022.

This was followed by another two acquisitions in 2021 – one by CDL Hospitality Trusts (CDLHT), the Group’s REIT associate – who forward funded the 352-unit The Castings Build to Rent scheme in Manchester, and 370 unit The Octagon in Birmingham.

The Junction has obtained Practical Completion for three out of five blocks – comprising 307 units – and has achieved above 90% committed occupancy as of October this year. The remaining two blocks with 358 units are on track for completion by Q4 2023. 

CDL continues to expand its UK living sector portfolio in key regional UK cities – to leverage the rising demand for rental accommodation in the country. With the acquisition of 1NQ, the Group’s PRS portfolio now comprises 1,648 operational and pipeline units in Leeds, Birmingham and Manchester.