European Activities

This division is focussed on real estate development and management within Continental Europe, with particular emphasis on purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA).

Having established a successful PBSA development business in the UK, Crosslane soon realised that other European countries offered even greater opportunities, since many were 10 to 15 years behind a maturing UK PBSA market.


The increasing transient student population, willing to travel outside their country of origin to obtain an education, increasing numbers of courses being taught across Europe in English and low or virtually free tuition fees, in combination with a vibrant city culture lifestyle has made European universities highly desirable and a surge in overseas student numbers is being experienced, particularly from non-EU countries, with huge continued increases predicted.

Crosslane identified these trends some time ago and went about replicating its UK PBSA development business in other European countries.

Crosslane was an early mover in the European student accommodation market, initially using joint ventures as the method for rapid market entry, to obtain local knowledge, understand provincial nuances, and access regional partners and agents.

Having established business activities in a number of countries, Crosslane now deploys a direct model with full control and has employed its own teams of experts in each local market.

Crosslane is recognised by Savills (UK) Limited as one of the first major UK developers to enter the European market and this strategy has attracted significant institutional and private client investment through a variety of Crosslane affiliated fund vehicles.

Current business activities include Germany, France, The Netherlands and Spain, although the potential prospects within each country are constantly reviewed to understand if other geographies provide attractive opportunities to enter new markets.

In each country a separate Crosslane business has been established with investment decisions based on local intensive research, extensive risk analysis and proven viability processes, to ensure strategies are effective to create robust returns on investment.

Crosslane has proven experience in all parts of the end-to-end process:-
• Identifying the most attractive site locations through thorough research & analysis to pinpoint optimum site selection
• Designing properties of a size that drive strong yields whilst meeting student needs, both now and in the future
• Achieving planning permission
• Acquiring land
• Obtaining development debt
• Building strong relationships with contractor partners to develop assets
• Obtaining investment debt
• Achieving bookings for new buildings prior to completion
• Operational lettings & management of properties
• Inclusion of rent guarantee to safeguard income for fund
• Ongoing asset management