iQ Student Accommodation appoints new Chair


New appointment signals growing interest in the private purpose-built student accommodation sector

iQ Student Accommodation (iQ) today announces the appointment of Penny Hughes CBE as Non-Executive Chair with immediate effect.

Penny is a Non-Executive Director of Royal Bank of Scotland (2010-) and SuperDry PLC (2015-), and has held the role of Chair of The Gym Group since its IPO in 2015. Penny is a very experienced Director, with a particular focus on consumer facing businesses. Former Non-Executive Directorships include Wm.Morrison’s Supermarkets PLC, Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB, Home Retail Group plc, Vodafone Group plc, Reuters Group PLC, Cable & Wireless Worldwide plc and The Gap Inc. Penny spent the majority of her executive career at Coca-Cola where she held a number of leadership positions, latterly as President, Coca-Cola Great Britain and Ireland.

Significant not for profit work includes 8 years as a British Museum Trustee, 6 years as President Advertising Association and nearly 5 years as Chair King’s College School, Wimbledon during which time the school was recognised as Sunday Times School of the Year.

Commenting on her appointment, Penny Hughes CBE said:iQ is a great success story, particularly in the last two years where its growth now puts it as the largest student accommodation provider in the UK by portfolio value. The purpose-built student accommodation sector is an exciting one – with continued growth in student numbers and appetite for quality accommodation resulting in increased investment. I am very much looking forward to taking on this role and working with the talented and dedicated board and management team to create a truly stand out business serving students.”

Rob Roger, CEO of iQ, said: “We are delighted that Penny – with her wealth of skills and experience – has joined our board as Chair, an appointment that is testament to the growing interest in the PBSA sector and iQ’s strong position within it. Penny’s focus on growing iconic customer-facing businesses is a perfect match for our own mission to deliver a fantastic student experience, and we look forward to this new chapter.”

Penny succeeds John Hughes CBE, who sadly passed away in 2017, having played a crucial leadership role in the development of iQ following the merger with Prodigy Living in 2016.


Notes to Editors

iQ Student Accommodation is the largest provider of private purpose-built student accommodation in the UK by portfolio value, and owns and operates 66 student premises in 27 towns and cities. Our student accommodation is well-located and high quality, and provides the best home-from-home environment for 28,000 university students from all over the world. We want to give students peace of mind by creating safe, comfortable and fully serviced environments. We have staff and security teams at each residence, on hand and on-site 24/7. We make sure that it is as easy as possible for students to become part of their new community by providing shared social and study spaces, free leisure facilities, gyms and events. iQ was established in 2016 and is owned by Goldman Sachs and the Wellcome Trust.


Media Contacts

Brunswick Group for iQ Student Accommodation +44 (0)207 404 5959