Property experts acquire landmark Portsmouth tower

Prominent property investment and development firm, Property Experts, has completed the acquisition of Venture Tower, a landmark commercial tower in the centre of the City of Portsmouth.

Secured for £1.575 million, in an off-market deal, the 30,000 sq. ft. eight-storey building situated on Fratton Road, has planning in place to be converted into high-quality student accommodation, providing 97 apartments.

Full of potential, the Property Experts team are exploring a number of possibilities for the site, including extending the tower, which dates back to the 1960s, and creating 40 residential units. There is also the opportunity to demolish the existing block and replacing it with a striking 15-storey building, providing c.100 new-build apartments.

Commenting on the deal, Bruce Burkitt, Founder and Managing Director of Property Experts, said: “The acquisition of Venture Tower is a fantastic piece of business for Property Experts and one that showcases our growth and direction. We have been consciously targeting significant projects that will allow us to uncover considerable value growth and deliver a final scheme that will improve the existing setting.

“We are currently in close discussions with Portsmouth City Council, who own the adjacent Bridge Shopping Centre, about our final plans, which we believe will greatly transform the location and produce a landmark building for the city.”

The current plans in place for Venture Tower include the conversion of the commercial premises into 97 student apartments, with communal lounges and kitchens, as well as a gym, laundry, over 30 bicycle storage spaces and a communal roof terrace.

Portsmouth University is home to over 28,000 students, with a significant international cohort of over 5,000 from c.160 countries. This has led to an increased demand for specialist accommodation that the university is unable to support on campus.

Granting planning permission in 2017, a number of councillors spoke positively about the tower’s use for student housing, highlighting the significant need in the area.

The acquisition of Venture Tower further showcases Property Experts’ ability to secure significant assets in areas on the cusp of substantial growth and regeneration, offering maximum value uplift potential.

Recent examples include the conversion of a former Lloyds Bank on Horley High Street into a collection of 24 residential apartments that have a GDV three times that of the initial investment. Further showcasing their ability to spot future trends in key UK locations, they acquired 15 dilapidated seafront apartments in St. Leonard’s on Sea, Hastings, for £535,000, in January 2015, that have now been valued collectively at £3 million following an extensive modernisation and uplift programme.