A Southampton-based property development firm has launched a mini-bond to help it raise investment needed to expand its business, based on converting commercial property into affordable homes.

Southampton Based Housing Property Development Specialist Ocea Group Launches ISA Eligible and Asset Backed Mini-Bond

Ocea Group, based at Enterprise House in ocean Village, is aiming to raise up to £5 million from investors and over the five-year lifetime of the mini-bond, has forecast to make total revenues of £29.8m and profits of £25.0m over the period before returning the capital raised to investors.

The company, which has a staff of 13, has completed a number of development projects using the government’s Prior Approval Development Rights scheme, which helps facilitate a quicker development life cycle.

It has purchased or developed 19 projects with a Gross Development Value in excess of £100m and which have provided significant returns for both retail and institutional investors who include Aldermore Bank, Paragon Bank and United Trust Bank.

Among the projects underway is one at Saxon gate Southampton on Ocea's own former offices, which are being converted into 42 residential apartments split over 4 floors in partnership with Wessex Green.

In partnership with UK Crowdfunds Ltd, Ocea is currently offering investors a property backed and tax efficient Innovative Finance ISA qualifying 5-year mini-bond targeting a yield of 6.85%.

Justine Curtis, director and co-founder of Ocea said: “We are very excited about offering investors the opportunity to gain exposure to the UK property market and benefit from the success that Ocea Group has achieved in the past three years. As with any investment, returns are not guaranteed, but our aim is not only to provide investors with a stable tax-free income from their investment in the ISA eligible Ocea mini-bond, but to help address the chronic UK housing shortage by providing affordable and desirable housing.

-Key features of the bond include:

- Asset backed by UK property

- Bondholders benefit from a debenture over all the assets of Ocea Group Limited

- Independent Security Trustee appointed to act in the interest of bondholders

Glenn Delve, director and co-founder of Ocea, said: “Recent research conducted showed that seven in 10 would consider purchasing a property that was previously an office and converted into a home. With the housing ladder out of reach for so many first time buyers, Ocea is using the government’s Prior Approval Permitted Development scheme to convert commercial property into high quality residential property.”