New £50m loan secured

News – 1 September 2022

Local housing provider Grand Union Housing Group has secured a £50m loan under the Affordable Homes Guarantee Scheme (AHGS).

Grand Union manages 12,500 homes across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Northamptonshire and Hertfordshire and agreed the 30-year borrowing from ARA Venn, the investment firm managing the scheme on behalf of Saltaire Finance. The loan was funded from the existing May 2052 bond series.

Mona Shah, Executive Director of Finance & Business Services at Grand Union, said: “We are extremely pleased with the outcome of this funding round, achieving competitive pricing in a challenging capital market that is only likely to become more challenging over the coming months.

“The funding will help with our aim to build up to 400 homes a year over the next five years and limit our exposure to increases in interest costs.”

ARA Venn said the sale of the bonds, which are guaranteed by the government, was completed in a “challenging capital market and economic backdrop” achieving an all-in cost of around 3.2 per cent, with pricing at 72 basis points over gilts.

In its last financial year to the end of March 2022, Grand Union posted a 22 per cent rise in post-tax surplus to £9.3m off a turnover of £85.9m, figures published last week showed.