Australian developer eyes expansion with London office opening

Australian property developer Third.i has opened its first overseas office in London as it seeks to expand its pipeline to £1bn over the next five years.

The developer, which has been active in the London market for almost five years, has a £185m pipeline of new-build homes in the capital and has a further £130m planned once it completes an acquisition later this month.

Third.i is in the process of buying a circa 52,000 sq ft site in central London, which will feature luxury apartments.

It is also planning to purchase three additional sites by the end of 2024, which will add a combined GDV in excess of £500m.

The firm took up around 1,600 sq ft of office space in April at 22 Albert Embankment, SE1, for its six employees, including co-founder Ron Dadd and director of development Gareth Hardy.

Third.i acquired its first scheme in London in 2018 when it bought 58-70 York Road, SW11, followed by Graphite Square, SE11, (pictured) in 2020. In Australia the company has delivered more than $4bn (£2bn) of commercial and residential properties.

Later this year the developer will launch its Graphite Square scheme, which comprises 160 homes, 80,000 sq ft of co-working office space and communal gardens. A third of the flats were sold in less than three months during the initial marketing campaign, which made it the fastest selling scheme in Zone 1.

Co-founder and director Luke Berry said: “This is the strategic next step following our growth in Australia. We want to let our buyers know that we are here to stay, through not only investing in a full-time office but by relocating some of our Australian team too.

“There are significant opportunities to be had in the UK, from student accommodation to retirement living, so London is an appealing base to operate from.”

He added: “Gareth went to school with one of our founders and has followed us on our Third.i journey ever since. He saw an opportunity in London and asked if he could produce a fully secured deal to us, would we consider it. We agreed and that was our flagship project in Battersea. We have continued to grow the UK business ever since and it was important for us to have an office in the area we are focusing on, which is close to both Graphite Square and another site we are about to acquire.”

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