Latest results show dip in pre-tax profit, but adjusted earnings up 13% 

Student housing giant Unite Group has revealed it has a “record” £1.3bn development pipeline providing 37,000-bedrooms for UK students.

Unite has £569m worth of committed pipeline in cities with Russell Group universities and a further development pipeline of £452m. 

Marsh Mills Bristol 2

Unite has a large pipeline of work in cities with Russell Group universities, like Bristol

This is in addition to its first joint venture, a £250m 2000-bed development project with Newcastle University, announced earlier this month. 

In preliminary results for the year to 31 December 2023, Unite reported adjusted earnings of £184.3m, an increase of 13% on the previous year (£163.4m).

Pre-tax profits were down 71%, however, to £102.5m compared with £350.5m in 2022.

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“This is a strong set of results, driven by full occupancy, rental growth and substantial investment into our platform and portfolio,” said Joe Lister, chief executive of Unite Students.

“Our pipeline of developments, asset management projects and our new university partnership present a substantial growth opportunity for the business. The supply-demand imbalance of student accommodation is acute and continues to intensify.” 

Fuelled by 99.8% occupancy rates and 7.4% rental growth last year, the developer says it predicts rental growth of at least 6% for 2024/25.

It currently has 80% reservations for 2024/25 and says it predicts its earnings growth will “accelerate from 2026 as development completions increase.”

In October, Unite announced the promotion of its chief financial officer Joe Lister to chief executive.