University College London secures 280 million line of credit

04 May 2016 Consultancy.uk

As part of its long term vision the UCL, in its UCL 2034 strategy, is investing in a number of facility upgrades and expansions, which includes the upgrade of UCL’s Bloomsbury campus and its student centre, as well as establishing UCL East. The UCL has secured a £280 million long term credit facility from the European Investment Bank as part of its £1.25 billion capital investment programme, supported by debt advisors from KPMG. 

The University College London (UCL) is embarking on a long term vision for the institution in its UCL 2034 strategy. The aim of the strategy is, among others, to support a diverse intellectual community that is engaged with the wider world and committed to changing it for the better. As part of its strategy, the institution seeks to generate sufficient surpluses that allow them to invest for sustainability. The strategy also requires appropriate investment in the estate and other aspects of infrastructure, such as IT and library resources. 

To meet its strategic 2034 goal, the institution has begun a £1.25 billion capital investment programme – which will be spent over a period of ten years. Funding for the programme comes from a wide range of sources, including a long term credit. One line of credit, secured in 2015, is an £150 million revolving facility: led by HSBC and alongside Barclays, Lloyds and RBS. It was recently announced that the institution has secured another long term credit facility, valued at £280 million over 30 years, provided by the European Investment Bank. The deal was secured with the support of KPMG, through its KPMG Capital Advisory Group, in a team led by Associate Director Marc Finer and colleagues David Reitman and Sam Andrews. Legal advice surrounding the deal was provided by Pinsent Masons.

Through the funding, the capital investment programmes are already underway, including the refurbishment and upgrade of UCL’s Bloomsbury campus and its upgraded student centre, as well as establishing UCL East.

Phil Harding, Director of Finance at UCL, says that he is “delighted” to have secured the flexible and long-term debt facilities for its delivery of an ambitious programme of estate transformation for UCL. He adds that “The teams at KPMG and Pinsent Masons have combined very effectively to deliver an outcome that matches our needs perfectly and on terms that are better than we had expected.”

Marc Finer, who leads KPMG’s debt advice to the sector, remarks that the firm is “delighted” to have advised UCL, ranked among the world’s top universities, on a competitive and flexible long term funding package to support its exciting strategic vision for the future. Finer adds: “This funding will enable significant capital investment in the university’s facilities, ensuring it continues to attract first class talent, in turn securing UCL’s leading position at the forefront of innovation in higher education.”

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