GIC in deal acquiring one of largest owners of US manufactured-home communities

The exterior of a Yes! Communities manufactured home. PHOTO: YES! COMMUNITIES
The exterior of a Yes! Communities manufactured home. PHOTO: YES! COMMUNITIES
A clubhouse in a Yes! manufactured-housing community. PHOTO: YES! COMMUNITIES
A clubhouse in a Yes! manufactured-housing community. PHOTO: YES! COMMUNITIES

SINGAPORE - Yes! Communities, one of the largest owners and operators of manufactured home communities in the United States, said on Monday (Aug 15) that it has sold a 71 per cent equity interest in its combined businesses to two global institutional investors, including affiliates of Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed but the Wall Street Journal in June reported that the deal to acquire Yes could value the company at more than US$2 billion.

Private-equity firm Stockbridge Capital Group's existing investors, together with members of Yes!'s management team, will continue to own an approximately 29 per cent interest in the new, consolidated enterprise.

Yes! owns or operates 178 manufactured-housing communities in 17 US states, with more than 44,600 residential home sites, an inventory of over 11,500 manufactured homes and a portfolio of home loans secured by homes within its communities.

Manufactured housing is a niche residential real-estate business in the US. Most communities consist of prefabricated housing units that are set in place though many have wheeled chassis that make them transportable.

Yes! said its three manufactured home community portfolios will be consolidated into a single entity, whose principal owner and sole general partner will be Yes Communities, LLC, a newly formed real estate investment trust.

Said Adam Gallistel, regional head for Americas, GIC Real Estate: "The manufactured housing sector is a unique and highly-attractive niche in the US residential market, which GIC has been exploring for some time. Given the relative lack of consolidation, it is very difficult to enter this sector in scale.

"We view Yes! as an exceptional opportunity to do just that. With a very capable management team and strong institutional sponsorship, Yes! shares our values and our dedication to seeking opportunities to further expand the company's successful business model."