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£44M OakNorth Loan Grows Bruntwood's Birmingham Bioscience Offer, And It's Very Timely

Life sciences, industrial and property management are some of the sectors and specialties seeing increased or sustained hiring.

OakNorth Bank is providing a £44.4M loan to Bruntwood SciTech to support the development of the 1M SF Birmingham Health Innovation Campus and a city centre tech scheme.

In April, city planners approved proposals for the 10-acre health innovation site close to the University of Birmingham and Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham. The 1M SF health and innovation campus is badged as the West Midlands’ only dedicated health and life sciences campus.

The OakNorth loan will also support development for the digital tech sector at Innovation Birmingham in the city centre’s Knowledge Quarter. The 120K SF Enterprise Wharf development at Innovation Birmingham is due to open this year. 

The funding means Birmingham’s tech property offer can compete as competition within the growing sci-tech sector takes off in the Midlands and beyond.

Last month Harrison Street and Trinity Investment Management completed a £120M deal to buy BioCity Group. The deal includes the acquisition of 12 properties totalling 488K SF across three science parks in Nottingham, Glasgow and Cardiff. 

This will be combined with Harrison Street and Trinity’s existing portfolio of life sciences properties to create a new company called We Are Pioneer, with a 2.6M SF portfolio of life sciences real estate comprising science parks and single buildings in eight cities across the UK. 

The Bruntwood SciTech portfolio, a 50:50 joint venture with Legal & General, totals 1.8M SF and is valued at more than £527M. The business owns nine sector-specialist campuses across Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Birmingham, Alderley Park — the UK’s largest single-site life sciences campus — and most recently Melbourn Science Park, near Cambridge.