A Unique Property Development Investment Model
At Cogress we bring together property developers and investors and provide access to carefully vetted investment opportunities.
Our partnership model pools together investors' funds, allowing High Net Worth and Self-Certified Sophisticated investors to take a stake in a property development, or contribute to its funding, from as little as £20K.
Cogress rigorously scrutinises and assesses each development opportunity, only launching one in every 30 opportunities that we analyse. By providing investors with transparent information and business plans for each project, we give you the freedom to pick and choose those investments that most appeal to you and build a diverse investment portfolio.
Investments take the form of private equity or mezzanine loans with returns payable upon exit. Time frames are typically estimated between 18 months and 3 years.
Cogress’ approach differs from a basic partnership or crowdfunding model in five key ways:
Thorough and meticulous due diligence including analysis of line-by-line costs, risks, saleability and market comparables.
- Underwriting of every project by Cogress to guarantee each development will commence as planned. We will finance any fundraising deficits to ensure all financial and investment prerequisites are met.
- Each investor is assigned to an Investor Relations Manager who is always available to answer questions, meet face to face or take you on a site visit.
- Ongoing portfolio management including monthly site visits and quarterly reporting to investors;
- Transparency and clarity provided to investors on every aspect of the investment process and on each stage of every property development.
Cogress Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (no. 696171)
Target investment duration of
Flexible investment options start at £20K
* Target returns are shown net of Cogress fees and based on each project’s estimated costs and Gross Development Value (GDV). Past performance is not a guarantee of future results.
Selecting the Right Property Development Investment Opportunities
We are committed to offering our registered investors only those investment opportunities which meet our stringent criteria and pass through our painstaking selection process.
This process starts with our Origination Team who meet and speak to property developers on a daily basis. With extensive experience in property acquisition, surveying and valuation, our team conducts a thorough assessment of the developer’s track record and ability to deliver the specific project they have presented to us. We meet the development team, visit the project site and other completed projects, and assess the developer’s overall operations, background and experience. An initial stage of due diligence on the project itself also examines the business plan as well as the location, target market and saleability.
Our current investment strategy typically focuses on multi-unit projects in London and key growth hubs throughout the UK, with capital values below £1m per unit and a price per square foot below £900. These can be residential, mixed-use or commercial properties.
If the Origination Team is satisfied with the information gathered, the opportunity is presented to our first Investment Committee, made up of the company’s senior management team who have decades of combined property development experience.
We really want to see progression from project to project. Developers who have succeeded and then built on that success, proving themselves by progressing to bigger and better projects
Head of Origination, Cogress
Effective Due Diligence
If the opportunity passes review by the first Investment Committee, full due diligence begins.
Typically, we spend up to three weeks reviewing and examining every aspect of the project in detail, including but not limited to:
- A line-by-line assessment of the costs, including review by a qualified quantity surveyor;
- Assessment of all risk factors relating to the construction;
- Detailed scrutiny of the planning permission granted (NB: we only launch projects with planning permission already in place);
- Evaluation of the local market, target buyers and comparable properties to determine sales values and saleability;
- The project’s financing arrangements and documentation;
- All existing legal documentation;
- The sensitivity of the project to unexpected changes in gross development value (GDV) or timescales; and
- the developer’s experience, track record and financial and operational stability.
If we are satisfied with every element of the project’s suitability it will it be passed to our second Investment Committee who will make the decision on whether to launch the opportunity to investors. Only 1 in 30 projects which undergo initial due diligence make it through to launch. On average we launch 1-2 investments per month.
Our model wouldn’t be able to fulfil its purpose without the exacting standards behind our selection process. Due diligence sits at the very core of our property investment strategy. It’s something we take extremely seriously.
Head of Structured Finance, Cogress
Once the opportunity is approved by our final Investment Committee, our analysts’ research is summarised and presented to registered investors in a detailed and transparent business plan.
Our aim is to ensure investors have all the information they need to reach an informed decision. If they have questions, an Investor Relations Manager is always on hand to provide additional information, meet face-to-face or even arrange a site visit or introduction to the developer.
Those who choose to invest in any of our property investment opportunities pool their capital and become partners in a Limited Partnership specific to that project. Cogress is the General Partner, acting as a single voice for all investors and working to protect their best interests.
Each project is structured as either a private equity investment opportunity or a mezzanine loan.
The Funding Structure
Typically, about 65% of the total cost of the development is provided by a senior debt provider (eg: bank or specialist property lender)
Of the remaining 35%, c. 90% is provided by Cogress investors in the form of a private equity or mezzanine loan investment. The remaining 10% takes the form of an equity injection from the developer
The developer must have skin in the game. We expect all developers to personally contribute to equity—and make personal guarantees—to ensure they have a very real and personal incentive to deliver the project with results.
Business Development Director, Cogress
The Equity Model
With the equity model, a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) is established between the developer and the investors’ Limited Partnership. The JVA establishes the relationship between the two parties and outlines the responsibilities of the developer. Investors have an equity stake in the property development and share any profits with the developer upon exit. The investment is secured against the title deeds of the property and a personal guarantee from the developer to compensate for any cost overrun.
Each JVA is investment-specific. Cogress ensures that the JVA terms protect investors' best interests, incorporating mechanisms that mitigate some of the risks of property development, such as delays or cost overruns.
The Mezzanine Debt Model
In a mezzanine debt investment opportunity, investors collectively provide funding in the form of a mezzanine loan to the property developer to finance part of the development project’s costs.
The investment is typically secured with a second charge against a property, alongside a personal guarantee from the developer.
Investor returns are received upon exit in the form of interest on the loan.
Mezzanine lending ranks below senior debt (the main first charge lender) but above equity holders.
With investments starting at £20K, these different investment options, coupled with the breadth of Cogress’ property investment opportunities in terms of locations and development type, offer investors good opportunities for portfolio diversification.
Monitoring all Property Investment Projects
Once the project is underway, our portfolio managers closely monitor the development, acting as the eyes, ears and hands on the ground for our investors and ensuring we put their needs first.
They speak regularly to the developer, conduct monthly site visits, review finance structures, monitor construction progress, and assess the sales strategy. All this information is compiled into quarterly reports which are shared with investors.
We understand all the potential complications involved in property development—but more importantly, we have decades of experience and the collective expertise to step in to resolve these issues when necessary.
Always Putting Investors’ Interests First
As you can see, our uniquely comprehensive end-to-end approach both untangles the complexities of property development investment, and provides a unique level of assurance for our investors.
From selecting the right opportunities and conducting detailed due diligence, through carefully structured investment vehicles, to the personal attention and support provided by our IRMs, the Cogress approach has our investors’ interests at heart.
Our development partners receive far more than just money—the understanding, expertise and hands-on support that Cogress provides really are unique. The flipside is that we will always put our investors’ interests first.
Co-founding CEO, Cogress
Our business model provides clients with the reassurance that we only offer investment opportunities we firmly and demonstrably believe in, delivered via an investor-focused approach that concentrates on helping you transform your investment potential into real returns.