Ardstone Homes, founded by former senior Friends First executives, has secured a €110 million revolving credit facility from Bank of Ireland as it seeks to deliver more than 2,500 homes over the near term.
The financing, arranged through Bank of Ireland’s property finance group, will assist Ardstone Homes with its working capital arrangements as it builds out on sites currently under construction in counties Dublin, Kildare, Wicklow and Galway.
The company was formed in 2016 by investment firm Ardstone Capital, an investment manager focused on the European property markets, which itself was established in 2005 by former Friends First property heads Donal Mulcahy, Ciarán Burns and Donal O’Neill. It plans to deliver more than 5,000 housing units over the next five years.
“Ardstone has a large pipeline of sites to support the consumer and private rental market,” said Steve Cassidy, managing director of Ardstone Homes. “The new facility reflects the strength of the operation and success in delivering housing to the market.”
The company has been among buyers of development sites and loans backed by landbanks from the National Asset Management Agency (Nama) in recent years.
Paul McDonnell, head of Bank of Ireland’s property finance group, said the lender has a €1.5 billion fund to support housebuilding, including family homes, private rental supply and student accommodation.
“Approved funding to date will deliver more than 5,400 new homes on 140 sites in both urban and regional locations across Ireland over the next few years, in addition to delivering 1,900 student beds,” Mr McDonnell said. “Funding the delivery of new homes is of strategic importance to the bank, as we help address the current demand/supply imbalance in the market.”
Goodbody Stockbrokers analysts estimate that some 18,855 new dwellings were completed in Ireland last year, marking a 31 per cent increase on the previous year. However, the figure remains well short of the figure of up to 35,000 homes that the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) projects is currently needed a year to match demand.