Legal & General strikes £4bn housing partnership deal with Oxford University

Legal & General has secured a £4 billion real estate partnership with the University of Oxford.

Funds from the insurer and financial services firm will be pumped into the development of homes for university staff and students.

The arrangement, which will also see the development of “science and innovation districts” in and around the city, is the latest sign of growing commercial interest in the UK higher education sector.

The funding, which will be delivered across the next 10 years, will be delivered by Legal & General’s Future Cities division, which has already funded the creation of more than 1,000 new homes in cities including Cardiff, Newcastle and Leeds.

Legal & General said it is working “50-50” on the project alongside the university, and could replicate the joint venture with other educational institutions in the future.

Group chief executive Nigel Wilson said: “Oxford University is one of the best in the world. It has inspired generations of academics and researchers, and today nurtures outstanding modern businesses with world-leading potential.

“Our partnership with Oxford University is leading the way in bringing together dynamic cities and patient capital, creating great outcomes for long-term investors and for the cities themselves.”

Professor Louise Richardson, vice-chancellor of the University of Oxford, said: “My colleagues and I are delighted to have formed this partnership with Legal & General.

“We look forward to working together to address some of the most pressing challenges facing the university today.

“We will build much-needed graduate accommodation, subsidised housing for university staff, and new science parks, where academic departments, university spin-outs and commercial partners can work together to create new companies as well as high-quality jobs.”