Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Big US Trailer Park Operator Set to Invade Australia


Hometown America, the major manufactured home park operator is believed to be poised to put Australia's modular housing industry into play, with Hometown America tipped to be planning a takeover bid for Gateway Lifestyle and Ingenia Communities in an upcoming deal that could create a $1 billion-plus Australian behemoth.

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It is also uncertain whether the group is looking at buying both targets and merging them or owning only one, although many believe bringing the $463 million Ingenia and $643.7m Gateway together makes sense due to the synergistic benefits.

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The manufactured/modular housing sector in Australia remains highly attractive to American groups that have the expertise running trailer parks and are eager to consolidate the Australian market.

The Hometown America owns a portfolio of about 60 estates in the US and is funded by the Washington State Pension fund, which already owns interests in Australian student accommodation provider Urbanest.

Hometown’s Australian subsidiary — Hometown Australia — established an operation here several months ago headed by former Colliers International executive Stuart Strong, with the group targeting assets to buy in NSW, although no investments have yet been made.

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