Interview with Olivia Drew, Portfolio Manager, UK Life Sciences at UBS Asset Management, Real Estate & Private Markets
What exactly is life sciences real estate?
It comprises properties specifi cally designed and built for companies within the life sciences industry. These companies require highspecification facilities that meet their unique needs. Some of those requirements relate to aspects such as the number of air changes per hour within a laboratory, the mechanical engineering that goes in to support these types of features, the vibration criteria of the floors — considerations not typical for an office building. They can vary by different user types, whether the tenant is focused on biology, chemistry or technology. The real estate also plays a critical role in meeting the needs of these companies by providing facilities that meet, in some cases, regulatory requirements on the manufacturing side. As you can imagine, they also require signifi cant investment. Many of the companies in the space are managing a very tight cash runway. The role of the real estate sector to provide these more specialised facilities is becoming ever more important.
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