Norton Rose Fulbright advises Civitas Social Housing on groundbreaking IPO

Global Business November 18, 2016

First UK REIT offering pure-play exposure to social housing

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised Civitas Social Housing PLC (Civitas) on its successful £350 million IPO. Civitas is the UK’s first real estate investment trust offering pure-play exposure to social housing to float on the London Stock Exchange.

Civitas will invest in built social housing across England and Wales. It plans to invest in general needs, supported and extra care social housing.

Cenkos Securities plc acted as sole sponsor and financial advisor.

The Norton Rose Fulbright team was led by partner Michael Newell and assisted by Jack Kelly and Koushik Prasad. Norton Rose Fulbright’s tax team, led by partner Angela Savin and assisted by senior associate Julia Lloyd, led on tax structuring.

Mike Newell commented: “We are delighted to advise on this landmark transaction. There is a significant social housing shortage in the UK which requires innovative solutions. Civitas will have the opportunity to assist housing associations and local authorities to free up the capital required to expand their development programmes.”

Norton Rose Fulbright has a long history of advising asset managers and investors at every stage of the real estate fund cycle. This includes advising on the formation and structuring of funds, joint ventures and real estate investment trusts, investment portfolio acquisitions and disposals, and in devising exit strategies.

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