17/08/2021 - 15:33

Blackoak establishes $40m fund

17/08/2021 - 15:33

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Blackoak Capital Ventures has launched a $40 million investment fund targeting opportunities in the Specialist Disability Accommodation sector.

Tim Mack said the Blackoak management team had already committed $4 million to the fund. Photo: Supplied

Blackoak Capital Ventures has launched a $40 million investment fund targeting opportunities in the Specialist Disability Accommodation sector.

The fund is anticipated to deliver up to 50 new Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) residences in Western Australia over a 10-year term, via Lumen Living – Blackoak’s new business focused on delivering SDA.

Lumen Living will manage the fund, called the Lumenate SDA Investment Trust 1, and plans to partner with industry specialists to deliver the residences.

SDA is accessed through the National Disability Insurance Scheme and is a type of housing specifically designed to support people with extreme functional impairment or very high support needs.

Under the NDIS, eligible individuals are funded directly for SDA, with the model under way in the eastern states for several years but relatively new to WA.

Blackoak managing partner Tim Mack said there was a shortfall between individuals needing SDA and the amount of housing available.

“There are some 2,985 projected SDA participants in WA, and yet we currently only have SDA enrolled housing available for 200 participants,” Mr Mack said.

“The government has recognised that undersupply, and a change in policy around funding for SDA housing means it now flows directly to participants who decide where they want to live.

“The government strategy in this space is for the private sector to step up to help meet demand for housing, and this has created a clear market opportunity.”

Before SDA was legislated under the NDIS, individuals had limited choice of purposely designed housing to meet their needs, with many faced with aged-care facilities as their only option.

Under the NDIS reforms the federal government set a target to halve the number of people under the age of 65 from entering aged care by 2025.

A key aspect of facilitating that goal was including measures that would encourage the private sector to deliver SDA, including reasonable investment returns. 

“The SDA sector is a complex one, with funding, regulatory approval and changing technical specifications all creating barriers to entry – however, complex projects and investments are what we do best,” Mr Mack said.

“We have a specialist team in place, and our entry into this sector is backed by sustained and careful research.

“The clearest demonstration of our confidence in this new fund is the fact that our management team is also putting in capital, with a $4 million investment.”

There are few property groups specialising in the delivery of SDA.

Sana Living is another Perth-based organisation specialising in the space, with a handful of SDA villas and homes under construction.

Mr Mack said the SDA market offered an opportunity for the group to assist in meeting demand for specialised housing, with the additional benefit of being an ESG investment (an investment targeting environmental, social and corporate governance).

“… [T]his fund also offers investors the opportunity to be part of creating genuinely positive outcomes for an historically disadvantaged sector of our community,” he said.

Blackoak, formerly Warrington Capital Partners, is a WA-based private equity real estate investment firm.

The Lumenate SDA Investment Trust 1 is the first investment vehicle to be launched under the Blackoak name, targeting $40 million with an initial closing date of November 26 this year.  

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