Feel Good Friday – Scanlans & Castleforge Partners

There has been lots of positive things happening across the sector this week, so we wanted to share these good vibes with you as part of our ‘Feel Good Friday’ news items. 

Here is a little snap shot of what’s been going on.

Scanlans duo gain Chartered Surveyor Status

Two of Scanlans’ brightest young stars have passed their RICS Assessment of Professional Competence to qualify as chartered surveyors during lockdown.

The successful duo are Laura Jackson, who is based in Scanlans’ Birmingham office, and Lara Linsey, who is based in Manchester.

Laura, 36, joined Scanlans in September 2018 as a graduate valuation surveyor.

Single mum Laura combined studying with working full-time and, in the run-up to her APC, also had to juggle home schooling for her five-year-old daughter Orla during lockdown.

Laura began working in the property sector when she was 17 but found herself unemployed after the 2008 financial crash and decided to enrol as a mature student on a real estate degree course at Birmingham City University.

After having Orla, she worked part-time until her daughter reached school age.

Laura said:

“I am so happy and proud to gain chartered surveyor status. It’s been hard work, being a single mum working full-time while studying for my qualification, but it was worth it all to gain those magic letters, MRICS!

“Everyone at Scanlans has been very supportive and I really appreciate the guidance and mentoring I’ve received. The accreditation means a lot to me.”

Laura covers the Midlands region for Scanlans, carrying out commercial valuations and LPA Receivership work.

Lara, 27, who has a politics degree and a master’s degree in commercial real estate,  joined the firm in February 2019 as a graduate surveyor and made the most of lockdown by studying solidly for her APC.

At Scanlans she works all over the north west as a commercial surveyor.

Lara said:

“I’m overjoyed to have passed my APC at the first attempt. It’s a true testament to the support I’ve received from my colleagues.

“With their encouragement I felt bolstered to fulfil my potential, and I am thankful to them for facilitating my learning.”

Scanlans chairman Ian Stanistreet, who helped to mentor the pair, said:

“Gaining chartered surveyor status is an arduous process, as you have to prove your competence at different levels in a front of a panel of RICS assessors.

“There was the added complication for Laura and Lara of their APCs taking place on video during lockdown, but they have come through with flying colours and we are extremely thrilled for them both. They should be proud of their achievements.”

London-based Private Real Estate Investment Firm Castleforge Partners Closes Fund III

Castleforge Partners, a leading UK-based real estate fund manager, today announced the final close of its third value-add commercial real estate fund at over £270m.

Castleforge Partners III (“CFP III” or the “Fund”) successfully exceeded its predecessor by 15%, despite challenging fundraising conditions created by Brexit uncertainty and the COVID-19 outbreak.

Castleforge Partners has further diversified its investor base, securing new commitments from institutional investors in North America, Europe and Latin America including a private pension fund, endowment, foundation and family offices.

The Fund also received strong support from existing investors, with approximately 60% of the capital from long-standing partners. This combination of investors shows confidence in Castleforge Partners’ ability to outperform in the current market environment.

Castleforge Partners is a private equity real estate business that was established in 2010 and has grown to a team of over 70 professionals (incorporating their London headquartered core team and in-house operating platforms clustered around the asset base).

Since inception, Castleforge has closed 40 deals and successfully realized 17. Research remains a central tenet of the investment strategy and the output informs asset selection and thematic focus.

This has helped to guide Castleforge away from troubled sectors and built exposure to themes that benefit from structural growth tailwinds. Driven by research, Castleforge has placed increasing emphasis on operational improvement to supplement traditional value creation initiatives.

This has led to the creation of in-house operating platforms which enhance occupational experience to match evolving end-user demand, while driving yield and managing operational risk. The platform is establishing considerable scale in various high growth asset-classes and has begun to expand the asset base into continental Europe.

Commenting on the Fund closing, Brandon Hollihan, Co-Founder of Castleforge Partners, said:

“We are greatly appreciative of our investors, old and new, for their support and partnership. It is an exciting time for Castleforge Partners, and we believe we are well positioned to access new opportunities and grow our business, whilst also supporting the communities in which we invest.”

Atlantic-Pacific Capital served as the exclusive global placement agent.

Alex Hurst, Partner at Atlantic-Pacific, said:

“We are pleased to close CFP III with commitments in excess of the predecessor vehicle despite headwinds in the capital markets resulting from a trilogy of events incorporating Brexit, a snap election and a global pandemic. We have enjoyed the second collaboration with Castleforge Partners and expect their focus on risk management and the unremitting evolution of their platform will serve investors well.”


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