Gowling WLG advises Blackstone on £4.66bn IQ acquisition

05 March 2020

International law firm Gowling WLG has advised Blackstone, the private equity firm, on the acquisition of UK student accommodation company IQ from Goldman Sachs.

The firm partnered with Kirkland & Ellis to advise Blackstone on the deal, which has been described as the UK's largest private real estate transaction. A multi-disciplinary legal team worked on the deal, harnessing the full capacity and strength of the firm in order to ensure that the transaction was delivered in the timescales required.

IQ's portfolio includes 76 student accommodation sites in the UK, with 80 per cent of these sites located in prestigious Russell Group university towns.

The Gowling WLG team was led by Michael Twining, Robin Creek, Paul Lloyd and James Eddowes, with support from almost 50 people from various service lines across the firm.

Michael Twining, real estate Partner at Gowling WLG said: "It has been a pleasure to work alongside the Blackstone and K&E teams once again on such a significant transaction. We have called upon just about every area of the firm during this process, and collectively, we've been able to deliver a great result for a great client."

This deal follows on from Blackstone's £1.46 billion acquisition of Network Rail's arches portfolio, which we also provided legal advice alongside Kirkland & Ellis, and demonstrates the firm's expertise in the real estate market, as well as the power of cross firm teamwork.

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