A fund worth €50 million (£42m) targeted towards building investment for around 2,000 medium sized properties in Ireland has been launched.
It is expected that that the Pearl Residential Equity fund will support property developments across large areas such as Dublin, Cork, Galloway and Kilkenny, during the next three years.
It is estimated that the fund, launched by Pearl Property Management Ltd, will provide €5 million in equity for development of new properties with full planning permission on projects of up to 200 units in size. Large organisations backing the private company include Bank of Ireland, AIB and the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF). The ISIF commented that their support of Pearl was part of a larger State agency funding project for housing worth €916m.
One of the founders of Pear Property Management Ken McCullagh addressed the significant gap in investment for smaller properties compared to larger counterparts, which it is hoped this fund will address.
He commented: “With private equity and hedge fund financing mostly targeting larger builders and large-scale developments, the lack of liquidity for smaller developers is a constraint on the supply of new housing stock,
“We are not developers and we will not be buying land or sites directly and we won’t finance unzoned or agricultural land projects. This is about providing support to smaller builders who can add to our housing stock.”
He also stated that many SME developers were still feeling the effects a decade on from the property crash and struggled to obtain the finances required.
The investment committee responsible for the fund will be chaired by Aidan O’Hogan, former chairman and managing director of real estate organisation Osborne King.
The fund’s first investment is due to be revealed in the coming weeks.