Swiss Life acquires Manchester’s Duet BTR scheme

Swiss Life and Mayfair Capital enter UK market with the acquisition of its first residential development - the Duet Build to Rent scheme in Manchester.

Living area at the Duet Build to Rent scheme in Manchester, which has been acquired by Swiss Life and Mayfair Capital on behalf of its Swiss Life REF (DE) European Living fund | Moorfield Group | BTR News
Living area at the Duet Build to Rent scheme in Manchester, which has been acquired by Swiss Life and Mayfair Capital on behalf of its Swiss Life REF (DE) European Living fund.

Swiss Life Asset Managers and its wholly owned subsidiary Mayfair Capital acquire the Duet Build to Rent scheme in Manchester – its first residential development for approximately £73.85m for the Swiss Life REF (DE) European Living open-ended real estate fund, which is distributed exclusively by DEKA. The seller is Moorfield Real Estate Fund III of the Moorfield Group. Real estate consultancy Knight Frank acted as an intermediary for the transaction.

“Together with our subsidiary Mayfair Capital, this transaction represents a perfect start in the UK market, which provides further diversification for our fund.”

Christine Bernhofer, CEO of Swiss Life Kapitalverwaltungsgesellschaft and COO of Swiss Life Asset Managers in Germany

Opened in 2019, the Duet Build to Rent scheme was developed and operated by the Moorfield Group under its ‘More’. Brand. The development includes 270 homes – a mix of one, two and three bedroom apartments. Amenities include a gym, private work rooms, meeting room, waterfront garden, 24-hour concierge service, secure parking and bicycle storage. The pet friendly scheme also has the highest satisfaction rating of all rental apartments in Manchester on HomeViews.

“We are proud to have developed Duet together with Glenbrook. The project set a new standard for residential properties in Salford Quays. This transaction is our third successful sale of a fully stabilised residential property in the past year and is in line with our value creation strategy. Having recently completed the capital accumulation phase for our latest value-add fund, we now want to continue investing the funds in different forms of housing – from rental apartments to student and senior apartments to healthcare properties.”

Ross Netherway, Head of Origination, Moorfield Group

Duet is located in the Salford Quays district, 15 minutes from Manchester city centre and close to MediaCity, a media, digital and technology centre run by the BBC, which is expected to double in size over the next decade. Significant investments have been made in the site in recent months, including Landsec’s acquisition of 75% of MediaCity’s shares in November 2021. The jobs created in the future will make the district attractive to other young professionals who will need high-quality and professionally managed rental apartments. 

“Having created the conditions to expand Swiss Life Asset Managers’ residential real estate investments in the United Kingdom, this acquisition is the first of several planned acquisitions. Duet is an excellent fit for our thematic focus on residential developments with high comfort, a good ESG orientation and in a location with attractive demographic development. As a long-term owner, we will work with JLL as the manager and the experienced team on site to maintain the high level of service that the residents already receive.”

Jos Seligman, Transaction and Fund Manager, Mayfair Capital Investment Management