- Student accommodation developer Unite Group said it had agreed to acquire Liberty Living Group from Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for £1.4bn.

The payment was comprised of £0.8bn cash and £0.6bn of shares that would see CPPIB end up owning 20% of the enlarged company.

Unite said it would place around 26.4m new shares to raise £240m to part fund the cash component of the deal.

The acquisition was expected to deliver £15m of annual cost synergies from 2021, it added.

'This is a transformative acquisition which brings together the best of two companies with a wealth of expertise and experience in delivering for students and university partners,' chief executive Richard Smith said.

'By combining two highly complementary portfolios, the enlarged group will be well positioned to meet the growing need for affordable, high quality student accommodation in university towns and cities where demand is strong.'

'This, combined with our best-in-class operating platform, will mean more choice for universities and an enhanced service and welfare offer for students.'

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