StoreAway exploits growth in self-storage market

November 2021

GCW has been appointed by self-storage operator StoreAway to expand its UK portfolio. The brand intends to have 10 sites committed or open by the end of 2022, making use of redundant retail and office space in key regional centres.

GCW is assisting new market entrant StoreAway meet ambitious expansion goals after acting for the vendor on its latest acquisition in Redditch. The 34,000 sq ft Redditch unit opened in May and reflects the brand’s strategy to convert redundant commercial space. StoreAway has converted a former Poundstretcher and bingo hall into a self-storage facility designed to tap into local pent-up demand.

StoreAway has also capitalised on more affordable city centre retail space by opening a facility on the site of the former Next unit at the entrance of Liverpool ONE, in addition to converting former department store space on Birmingham’s Corporation Street. GCW is working to secure the acquisition of a 35,000 sq ft prime site in Cheltenham and is exploring further town and city centre opportunities across the UK. StoreAway is seeking a minimum of 30,000 sq ft, particularly targeting old supermarkets and department stores with service yards and goods lifts.

The UK-self storage market has proved one of the most resilient sub-sectors during the pandemic and according to the Self Service Association’s UK Annual Industry Report 2021, occupancy on lettable space is 82.3% up from 76.2% last year. For landlords, storage units offer an opportunity to generate income from redundant town and city centre assets. They can secure a 15-year lease and robust income stream without incurring significant conversion costs.