Thornton Place, London, England
Airdrie Place, Airdrie, Alberta
Elizabeth Gardens, Edmonton, Alberta
Wick Lane Wharf, London, England
Brookbanks Apartments, Toronto, Ontario
Trio on Belmont, Kitchener, Ontario
Yello on Yates, Victoria, British Columbia

About Us

Snapshot

40

yr

Over 40 years of success

6

bn

$6 billion of AUM

1000+

Over 1000 employees

Firm

Since establishing the firm over 40 years ago, the co-founders of Realstar are recognized as one of the most enduring partnerships in the Canadian real estate sector. We bring this same approach of consistency, honesty and integrity to all of our partnerships and customers.

Founded by Jonas Prince and Wayne Squibb, Realstar was created to address Canada’s need for high quality, affordable homes to rent. Since that time, we have become one of Canada’s largest private owner-operators of rental properties, with over 25,000 units coast-to-coast. More important to us, is our recognized success as an award-winning service provider to residents. Success in the rental housing sector led the firm into several ventures in the hospitality sector, not only in Canada, but Asia, the US and Caribbean as well.

Emerging from our success in these sectors, Ryan Prince established the firm’s UK presence in 2002. Since that time Realstar has successfully invested in the primary healthcare, hotel and rental residential sectors, including co-ownership in the UK’s largest ever hotel property transaction and more recently the establishment of a large scale rental housing platform in the UK (also referred to as Private Rental Sector (PRS) or Build-to-Rent).

Approach

As active owners and managers at heart, we are seldom passive investors. Our track-record is enhanced by the experience we bring to real estate deals through creative partnering, active on-going management and unique structuring.

We seek overlooked opportunities, often capital or product “misalignments,” where our point of view diverges from that of the market and our expertise can improve returns. We also look for investments with a low dependency on business cycles. Historically, we have invested in assets that sustain productivity and value in spite of fluctuations in the greater economy. These are often businesses where real estate is a major component that can be turned around or expanded dramatically with a creative new operating model.

Given its private ownership structure we are able to be discrete and dynamic in our approach and more ‘off the radar’. That said, some of our more notable transactions that are in the public domain include:

History

  • 1974Realstar is founded by Jonas Prince and Wayne Squibb.
  • 1975First apartment building in Bradford Ontario is constructed.
  • 1977Evolution and innovation of the customer-service focused management model, the essence of which is still employed throughout the portfolio today.
  • 1982Adds acquisition of existing properties to its new-build programmes.
  • 1985Establishes its asset management platform.
  • 1987Acquires Delta Hotels & Resorts.
  • 1989Acquires Pagecorp in a large public to private transaction in partnership with institutional capital partners.
  • 1992Acquires master franchise to Days Inn brand for Canada from Hospitality Franchise Systems (now Wyndham Worldwide).
  • 1992Forms strategic partnership with British Columbia Pension to acquire multi-unit residential properties.
  • 1995Ontario Teachers Pension Plan and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce become partners in Realstar property management platform.
  • 1998Sale of Delta Hotels management company and brand.
  • 2000Multi-unit residential portfolio grows to be one of Canada’s largest.
  • 2002Ryan Prince establishes Realstar International in London.
  • 2003Acquires primary healthcare portfolio across the UK.
  • 2004Joint venture with Accor SA (now G6 Hospitality) in Canada for Motel 6, Studio 6 and Novotel; entry into the Manufactured Housing sector.
  • 2005Acquisition of £1B UK Holiday Inn portfolio in joint venture with GIC Real Estate and Lehman Bros.
  • 2008Realstar European Capital Fund I & Manufactured Housing Fund I.
  • 2010Manufactured Housing Fund II.
  • 2011 Manufactured Housing Fund III; Realstar Apartment Partnership I.
  • 2013 Entry into UK multi-unit residential / PRS market; Realstar European Capital Fund II.
  • 2014Realstar Apartment Partnership II.
  • 2015Final disposal of LRG hotels portfolio; Realstar Apartment Partnership III; Realstar European Capital Fund III.
  • 2016Sale of UK primary healthcare portfolio.

Business Lines

Our wide view of the real estate market – as investors, owners and managers – often reveals undervalued opportunities in fragmented or undersupplied niche markets. We also seek to aggregate multiple properties for greater operating leverage and improved margins.

Residential

Canadian Multi-family

The firm is considered one of the best managers in the country – both for its partners and residents. We are a vertically integrated organisation with in-house acquisition, financing, engineering, operations, HR, marketing and asset management functions. Our portfolio is coast-to-coast from Halifax to Victoria, with a large concentration in Ontario. Our approach incorporates all stages of development, including: existing properties, forward purchase, forward funding and ground-up construction.

UK Private Rental Sector (PRS) & Build-to-Rent (BtR)

Realstar was one of the first companies to identify the opportunity to become a market leader in the UK’s emerging multi-unit private rental sector back in 2010. Since that time, the firm has gone on to create a London portfolio in excess of 1,000 units to date. We have also brought Realstar’s management platform and expertise to the UK market and are currently planning a launch of a new transformative consumer brand which we will seek to grow beyond the UK in the future.

Canadian Manufactured Housing

Realstar entered the manufactured housing sector in 2005. At the time, the sector had almost no institutional investment or management. We sought to acquire individual communities across the country and add both capital and our operating standards to improve customer experience. Since that time, we have successfully acquired 5,000 “pads” and continue to grow the platform under the Keystone/ Realstar brands.

Hospitality

Our track record and experience in the hospitality sector include aspects of the hotel arena.

Our desire is to seek out investment opportunities which are challenging to existing owners or which the market place does not fully appreciate.

Brands and assets in which we have had an active role have included:

Special Situations

Our expertise is operating businesses with real estate on the balance sheet.

As a result, there are many related sectors we own (or would like to own) which fit our investment criteria, these include:

Additional Sites