Student Housing

Prolifico acquires and develops student housing facilities for operation by ZAK, a joint venture company founded together with the former Head of Operations at UNITE, one of UK’s largest student housing companies.

Market Overview

Brazil currently has over 6.5 million students in higher education, a figure that has grown by 40% over a decade, while every year the Brazilian universities get over 2 million new students.

The market is still very early stage with just 4,500 beds in purpose built accommodation, much of which was built over 25 years ago, offering only shared bedrooms. In the US there are almost 3 million beds in purpose built student accommodation.

Most students in Brazil studying away from their home cities face fundamental notorious challenges:

  • Difficulty finding like-minded flat-mates in 1st year
  • Difficulty meeting landlord credit requirements
  • Complications with shared bills
  • Unaffordable rent in safe / desirable locations


The exponential growth in the number of university students, as well as the increasing number of students leaving home cities to study, are two of the aspects that precipitate the opportunity in this sector. Southern Brazil alone has circa 500,000 students living away from home (24% of students in the region). The market faces severe supply and demand imbalance, with poor existing product contrasting against strong awareness of student housing product available in Europe and North America.

Key drivers supporting market growth:


  • Focus on up-and-coming / “hip” areas near to universities in Brazil’s major university cities
  • Initial focus on Southern Brazil
  • Focus on brand awareness: location, design & social networks
  • Rapid stabilisation of assets through high profile “launches”.