LONDON, December 9, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Circle, the employee-owned partnership of clinicians, has today secured GBP50m to fund its second new-build hospital - CircleReading.

In a deal that signals a breakthrough in the UK development finance freeze, the site for the hospital has been purchased by the real estate investment arm for BP's pension fund, Ropemaker Properties, who will also provide financing for the construction.

CircleReading marks another milestone in Circle's programme to build and operate a new generation of state-of-the-art hospitals across the UK. Circle opened its first new-build hospital - CircleBath - in March 2010. CircleBath has proved its concept to deliver a new style of patient experience to both private and NHS patients - combining award-winning building design with high quality clinical care and five-star hospitality. CircleReading will follow the same patient-centric model and is due to open to the public in Autumn 2012.

Coming on the back of their selection as the preferred partner to run Hinchingbrooke hospital - the first NHS hospital to be franchised to the independent sector - last week, the development of CircleReading confirms that Circle's ambitious expansion strategy is on track.

Ali Parsa, Circle's Managing Partner said: "Circle was founded to redefine healthcare delivery in this country. Patient and GP reaction to our first hospital - CircleBath - has been phenomenal. We have now set our sights on transforming the hospital experience and quality of care available to patients in Reading."

Tim Hayne, of Ropemaker Properties said:"We are very pleased to be able to facilitate the development of the latest Circle hospital."

Dominic Reilly, of King Sturge Finance said:"King Sturge Finance is delighted to have achieved a successful financing solution on behalf of Circle and to be working with Ropemaker Properties on such an innovative and exciting real estate project"

Notes to Editors:

1. Circle forms the largest partnership of clinicians in Europe and is co-owned and managed by all the doctors, nurses and staff who work in Circle's hospitals, treatment centres and clinics.

2. CircleReading will be located in Southside Reading, next door to the Madejski Stadium, home to London Irish rugby club and Reading Football FC. The hospital will provide 9,000 square metres of accommodation, providing 5 operating theatres, 30 private, en-suite inpatient bedrooms and 18 day-surgery beds.

3. Circle was advised by King Sturge Finance on the acquisition and development financing. Vinci will be the main construction contractor and building works will commence in January.

4. CircleBath is a 6,500 square metre hospital with 4 operating theatres, 30 private, en-suite in-patient bedrooms and 18 day-surgery beds. Since it opened in March 2010, CircleBath has consistently delivered high-quality clinical outcomes, with no returns to theatre, zero infection rates, and every surgical procedure filmed to facilitate a culture of complete patient safety. Treatment is delivered in the first Norman Foster designed hospital in the world, described by The Observer as 'one of the finest hospitals in Britain', and recently voted 'Best Building in Britain', beating off stiff competition from the Victoria & Albert Museum, the UK Supreme Court and 23 Savile Row, Mayfair. Hospitality services are designed by the team that brought Mandarin Oriental into the UK, and delivered daily by former five-star hoteliers. Food is cooked by a chef previously from a Michelin-starred restaurant. 995 patients out of 1000 would recommend CircleBath to friends and family, with many describing the experience as their best ever at a UK hospital.

5. Additionally Circle operates and manages the Nottingham and Midlands NHS Treatment Centres, on behalf of the NHS, where Circle treats around 137,000 NHS patients per annum and delivered over 20% productivity improvement during its first year of operation.

6. Circle also owns and runs two surgical clinics in Windsor and Stratford.

7. Circle plans to build up to 30 hospitals across the UK over the coming years.

SOURCE: Circle

CONTACT: For further information please contact Christina Lineen at Circleon +44(0)7972-192845