Global Education Communities Corp. Signs MOU to Add GEC Kingsway to its Real Estate Portfolio
Vancouver, B.C., September 11, 2023 – Global Education Communities Corp (“GECC” or the “Company”) (TSX: GEC, OTCQX International: GECSF) is pleased to announce that the Company has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (the “MOU”) to deploys its new business segment, called the Master Lease Partnership Program (“MLPP”), first announced in its news release of September 5, 2023. The MOU details the business terms for GECC’s subsidiary, GEC® Living, to master lease approximately 80,000 gross buildable square feet of market rental apartments from a local developer. Preparation of the formal lease agreement is underway. GECC plans to deploy these new units as GEC® branded student housing facilities, adding approximately 260 beds to the Company’s existing 1,500 student beds portfolio. The launch date for GEC® Kingsway is expected to be in February 2024. It will become the 14th GEC®-branded building, including those in operation and under development.
GEC® Kingsway is a new facility located near a SkyTrain station in the centre of Metro Vancouver. The facility is currently under construction, with an expected possession date of February 2024. GEC® Kingsway is a 10 to 15-minute bus ride to several major colleges and universities, including the Vancouver Community College King Edward Campus, Emily Carr University of Art + Design, British Columbia Institute of Technology Burnaby, and the Sprott Shaw College East Vancouver and Burnaby Campuses. Travel time to downtown Vancouver via SkyTrain is less than 10 minutes, where hundreds of public and private colleges and universities, including the University of British Columbia (Robson Square Campus) and Simon Fraser University (Downtown Campus), Sprott Shaw College’s international campus, Sprott Shaw Language College and Vancouver International College, are located.
The new GEC® Kingsway property will follow GEC® Living’s operating model with fully furnished rooms, weekly housekeeping, security surveillance cameras and digital locks throughout the public areas, and amenities such as student lounges and a fitness centre.
“We are excited to launch our MLPP business model with the master lease of GEC® Kingsway and leverage our student housing platform, GEC® Living, to maximize the occupancy of this property,” commented Toby Chu, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. “The MLPP program will expand our existing operations, increase GECC’s revenue streams, complement our current corporate-owned student housing portfolio without deploying significant capital, and shorten the delivery time for student-bed deployments.”
Toby added, “The severe housing shortage in Metro Vancouver is causing concerns to our community. Our MLPP strategy provides GECC immediate access to new inventory in the development pipeline by partnering with several developers. This partnership program allows the developer to focus on construction and development instead of overseeing the daily operations of a rental property. Our MLPP strategy provides a solution to developers who have become discouraged by the economic returns on rental property developments due to rising construction costs, interest rate hikes, high inflation, and rent-control policies, which prompted developers to sell their rental inventory at a discount. GECC provides a viable alternative to these developers while addressing the housing needs for the community at large.”
GECC is one of Canada’s largest education and student housing investment companies focused on the domestic and global education market since 1994. GECC owns business and language colleges, student-centric rental apartments, recruitment centres and corporate offices at 41 locations in Canada and abroad. Its education subsidiaries include Sprott Shaw College Corp. (“SSCC”) (established in 1903), Sprott Shaw Language College (“SSLC”), Vancouver International College Career Campus (“VIC”) and CIBT School of Business & Technology Corp. (“CIBT”). GECC offers over 150 educational programs in healthcare, business management, e-commerce, cyber-security, hotel management, and language training through these schools. In 2022, GECC serviced over 13,000 domestic and international students through its educational, rental housing and recruitment subsidiaries.
GECC owns Global Education City Holdings Inc. (“GECH”), an investment holding and development company focused on education-related real estate such as student-centric rental apartments, a hotel and education super-centres. Under the GEC® brand, GECH provides accommodation services to 92 schools in Metro Vancouver, serving 3,000 students from 71 countries. The total portfolio and development budget under the GEC® brand is nearly $1.3 billion.
GECC also owns Global Education Alliance Inc. (“GEA”) and Irix Design Group Inc. (“IRIX”). GEA recruits international students for elite kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities in North America. Irix Design is a leading design and advertising company based in Vancouver, Canada. Visit us online and watch our corporate video at www.GEChq.com.
For more information, contact:
Chairman, President & CEO
Global Education Communities Corp.
Investor Relations Contact: 1-604-871-9909 extension 319 or | Email: info@GEChq.com
Some statements in this news release contain forward-looking information (the “forward-looking statements“) about GECC and its plans. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements in this news release include, without limitation, the expected success of the Company’s new MLPP strategy and the Company’s plan with respect to GEC® Kingsway. The forward-looking statements are subject to various risks, uncertainties and other factors (collectively, the “Risks”) that could cause the Company’s actual results or achievements to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by forward-looking statements. The Risks include, without limitation, the Company’s ability to reach an agreement with developers on the terms of master leases, national and global economic factors, customary risks of the construction industry, unexpected delays or requirements of the applicable municipalities, and the other risk factors identified in the Company’s management’s discussion and analysis for the interim period ended May 31, 2023. Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, opinions and expectations of the Company’s management at the time they are made, and the Company does not assume any obligation to update its forward-looking statements if those beliefs, opinions or expectations, or other circumstances should change, except as may be required by law.