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Equity Office Daily Brief: March 24, 2016

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Daily Brief

March 24, 2016

  EquilityOffice

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Tech-Heavy CRE Markets at Risk of Slowdown

Commercial Property Executive

 

While the recent tech boom has been beneficial to several CRE markets, can the momentum last in the face of current U.S. economic concerns? The tech boom since end of the recession has been manna for a number of commercial real estate...

 


Simi Valley Shopping Center Sells

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

A Simi Valley shopping center with many independent, long-time tenants has changed hands for $7.1 million, according to Investment Real Estate Associates, an Encino investment advisory firm. Plaza Los Angeles LLC bought the two-parcel shopping center at 1464 E. Los Angeles Ave....

 


LAU Enterprises Leases Warehouse in North Hills

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

A picture frame distributor, relocating from Van Nuys, is moving to warehouse space in North Hills, according to commercial real estate brokerage NAI Capital Co. in Encino, which negotiated the new lease. LAU Enterprises Inc. signed a multi-year lease to rent 32,356...

 



BLOG & ONLINE NEWS

 

NAS Expands Medical Office Portfolio

GlobeSt.com

 

KB Exchange Trust has hired National Asset Services to manage three newly acquired medical office properties. The three properties are dialysis centers operated by Fresenius Medical Care, and are part of the investor’s ongoing acquisitions of Fresenius Medical Care properties. With...

 


CBRE Fund Makes Major Purchase in Troubled Market

GlobeSt.com

 

CBRE Global Investors has purchased the Pasadena Towers, a two-building 477,000-square-foot class-A office complex. The purchase price was not disclosed, but sources unrelated to the deal sale that CBRE Global Investors purchased the property for $257 million from Beacon Capital Partners....

 


Building Owners Enjoyed 2015 Property NOI Growth at Highest Levels Since 2007

CoStar.com

 

For commercial property owners, 2015 was a very good year. According to early analysis of securitized loan results through February of 2016, the commercial properties backing the loans posted strong net operating income (NOI) growth, increasing 3.8% on average in 2015. Average...

 


Mostly Vacant Supermarket Site in Monrovia Sells

RENTV.com

 

A 97.5k sf, mostly vacant retail supermarket site in the San Gabriel Valley city of Monrovia traded hands. The price was undisclosed The property, known as Shamrock Center, is located at 723-727 E Huntington Dr, north of the 210 Fwy between Shamrock...

 


Former Bank Branch Building in Santa Monica Sells for $1,436/sf

RENTV.com

 

A 9.4k sf, former bank branch building in Santa Monica was acquired by Cadence | California, a private developer, for $13.5 mil. That divides out to $1,440 per sf. The property sits on a 30k sf site at 3032 Wilshire Blvd,...

 


ICM Gets Building Signage in Century City

GlobeSt.com

 

ICM Partners expands its lease at Constellation Place to 112,000 square feet on the top five floors on the 35-story high rise. The tenant formerly leased 93,000 square feet on the seventh, eighth and ninth floors. The new long-term lease earns...

 


Shake Shack's Next LA Location Is Century City

Eater LA

 

Shake Shack, coming off their insane West Hollywood opening last week (with lines that still snake around the corner, has quietly planted their next flag: in Century City's mall. Already Glendale and Downtown locations have been confirmed, but this fourth outlet tells you...

 

FULL TEXT


Tech-Heavy CRE Markets at Risk of Slowdown

Commercial Property Executive

 

While the recent tech boom has been beneficial to several CRE markets, can the momentum last in the face of current U.S. economic concerns?

The tech boom since end of the recession has been manna for a number of commercial real estate markets, but can it last in the face of recent jitters about the future of the economy and softness in some tech sectors? According to a recent report by Fitch Ratings, tech-oriented U.S. CRE market fundamentals have cooled, but are unlikely to collapse. More specifically, office and multifamily owners are most at risk from lower tech-tenant demand in markets such as San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Seattle, New York and Los Angeles.

Also, retail owners with holdings in these markets face some risk from cooling tech employment and capital availability, but should benefit from longer leases than multifamily properties and less tenant failure than office assets. Fitch sees limited risk for industrial and healthcare owners beyond regional and local economic softening.

Speculative leasing is a key unknown that will influence the severity of office market downturns in tech-heavy markets, said Fitch. Such leasing occurs when companies lease more space than they currently need in anticipation of future growth, typically motivated by rapidly rising rental rates and limited space availability. In most places, widespread speculative leasing—enough to meaningfully affect market dynamics—is rare.

Even so, it was an important factor in the collapse in office rents in San Francisco and Silicon Valley following the dot-com bubble in the early 2000s. The new supply of tech space seemed to be balanced with demand growth, until a lot of the speculative leasing space returned to the market. Whether that dynamic will happen again is still an open question.

Another factor that will affect the immediate future of tech office markets, noted Fitch, is that while most tech employment is at established tech companies, smaller startups play a key role in marginal office demand and pricing. Unlike companies in traditional office-using industries, smaller tech startups frequently don’t cover their lease payments with operating cash flow. They may have adequate financing to avoid a payment default during the lease term, but renewal/re-leasing risk is high if leases expire during a period of weak capital access.

-Dees Stribling

Simi Valley Shopping Center Sells

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

A Simi Valley shopping center with many independent, long-time tenants has changed hands for $7.1 million, according to Investment Real Estate Associates, an Encino investment advisory firm.

Plaza Los Angeles LLC bought the two-parcel shopping center at 1464 E. Los Angeles Ave. and 1902 Hubbard St. from Frank Mushmel of FM Enterprises Inc.

The portion of the center on East Los Angeles is 29,700 square feet, and was 95 percent occupied at the time of sale, with tenants such as the popular Egg House breakfast and lunch restaurant, said Yubin Tao, senior vice president of Investment Real Estate, who represented FM Enterprises. The Hubbard Street parcel, at 6,500 square feet, was 100 percent occupied. The two centers are divided by Hubbard Street.

“Most of the tenants – mom and pop businesses – have been there well over 20 years,” Tao said. “There’s been very little turnover. You just don’t see that anymore.”

Don Griffin with Landmark Realty negotiated on behalf of Plaza Los Angeles and said the buyer plans cosmetic improvements for the two properties, such as new signs, lighting, paint and stucco. He added that the newest tenant at the Los Angeles Avenue center is the national title lending business TitleMax, which signed a five-year lease for 4,150 square feet and recently opened its doors after a remodel.

-Carol Lawrence

LAU Enterprises Leases Warehouse in North Hills

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

A picture frame distributor, relocating from Van Nuys, is moving to warehouse space in North Hills, according to commercial real estate brokerage NAI Capital Co. in Encino, which negotiated the new lease.

LAU Enterprises Inc. signed a multi-year lease to rent 32,356 square feet at 8321 De Celis Place, according to NAI. LAU signed the deal with building owner Mark Goodman, according to CoStar Group Inc.

The warehouse, built in 1963, has 20-foot clear height for stacking items, four dock-high loading doors and two doors at grade level. LAU is moving its headquarters to the new location in April from a smaller, 17,356-square-foot space at 15757 Stagg St. in Mission Industrial Park, NAI said.

NAI Senior Associate Matt Ehrlich, who represented LAU in the deal, said industrial vacancies in the San Fernando Valley are “razor thin” at 0.8 percent.

“Warehouse space throughout the region is in short supply and experiencing strong demand,” Ehrlich said. “We’re extremely pleased to have found this space.”

-Carol Lawrence

NAS Expands Medical Office Portfolio

GlobeSt.com

 

KB Exchange Trust has hired National Asset Services to manage three newly acquired medical office properties. The three properties are dialysis centers operated by Fresenius Medical Care, and are part of the investor’s ongoing acquisitions of Fresenius Medical Care properties. With these new properties, NAS now has nine Fresenius Medical Care properties in its portfolio.

“The owner was looking for a company that has a national footprint and the ability to manage things remotely, but also a broad network of local resources if and when we needed them,” Carol Scott, managing director of National Asset Services, tells GlobeSt.com. “We are managing a portfolio of the Fresenius properties, and they are all single-tenant triple net leases. We have got quite a few of them now, and I am sure that there will more of them coming along.”

The three facilities are located in Virginia and Georgia, and total 24,971 square feet. Each is located near a medical campus, which Scott says helps to stabilize the assets and provide steady returns for investors. “The ownership is looking to achieve stable returns for their investors, and I think that by selecting these triple-net single-tenant leases, there is a lot more stability than there would be with multi-tenant properties, especially if you are looking at medical office as a segment of the real estate industry,” she adds. “There are some markets where a multi-tenant medical office building might be very stable, but it is also an industry where the changes over the last couple of years in the medical insurance field have really put medical office on its side with major campuses controlling more and more of what is going on in the community.”

KB Exchange has been purchasing the Fresenius properties, and as a result, National Asset Services has grown its medical office portfolio to ten total properties, nine of which are Fresenius properties. “These are new buildings, and the ownership is going into these thinking that these are going to be very stable assets with as little risk as possible,” says Scott. “KB Exchange is on a fairly aggressive expansion program, and their strategy is to acquire new facilities. They are the largest operator in the world, and we anticipate that will provide a number of opportunities for us.” The full portfolio is located in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Virginia and Wisconsin.

-Kelsi Maree Borland

CBRE Fund Makes Major Purchase in Troubled Market

GlobeSt.com

 

CBRE Global Investors has purchased the Pasadena Towers, a two-building 477,000-square-foot class-A office complex. The purchase price was not disclosed, but sources unrelated to the deal sale that CBRE Global Investors purchased the property for $257 million from Beacon Capital Partners. It is one of five class-A office properties in the market, and recently underwent a massive renovation to the tune of $18 million.

“We were targeting the Los Angeles MSA for office, and we liked the central business district location in Pasadena,” Kim Hourihan, portfolio manager at CBRE Global Investors, tells GlobeSt.com. “We also feel like there is upside to come in Pasadena, being so close to Cal Tech and with some of the trends that are happening with Old Town. It is the premier property in Pasadena, and it is in a fantastic location that is very walkable to all of the surrounding amenities.  All of those things attracted us to this asset.”

While the building is one of the most coveted in the market, Pasadena’s office market has been going through some hiccups recently with increasing vacancy rates and the potential for falling rents. Hourihan says that there was some discussion about these market challenges before the acquisition, but that they feel that the property can weather any oncoming storms. “There was a lot of consolidation in Pasadena, and frankly a lot of those tenants consolidated into this building or are about to move into this building,” she says. “We definitely see some rising vacancy happening in Pasadena over the next year or longer, but given the lease roll in this building, we kind of felt like all of that would work its way through. We also felt that the rent roll here was a nice roll that would take us through any vacancy in Pasadena and any potential correction over the next five years, because we are getting longer in this cycle.” The property has a 93% occupancy rate.

Despite the issues in the market, there was still competition for this site and a best and final round. “It was really the buyers who were most interested were a similar profile to us, including funds based in Pasadena,” adds Hourihan. In addition to the office space, the property has ground floor retail space and a 1,238-stall parking structure. It is also LEED Platinum certified.

CBRE purchased the property with capital in its fund and debt.

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Building Owners Enjoyed 2015 Property NOI Growth at Highest Levels Since 2007

CoStar.com

 

For commercial property owners, 2015 was a very good year. According to early analysis of securitized loan results through February of 2016, the commercial properties backing the loans posted strong net operating income (NOI) growth, increasing 3.8% on average in 2015.

Average NOI for commercial property backing CMBS loans showed a big jump in 2015, compared with 2.66% in 2014 and 2.64% in 2013, according to analysis by Wells Fargo Securities.

The Wells Fargo analysis is based on NOIs reported for more than 6,000 loans in conduit CMBS transactions.

While Wells Fargo cautioned the results are preliminary, if the growth rate stays near the current level, it would mark the highest change since the financial crisis, surpassing the 3.4% annual NOI average increase in 2012.

Hotel, self-storage and multifamily properties backing CMBS loans were the lead profit-centers, driving average NOI increases of 8.6%, 8.5% and 7%, respectively.

Multifamily Also Fares Well

In a separate analysis, CoStar Group took an early look at the full year 2015 NOIs reported for multifamily loans securitized by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

Fannie Mae DUS loans backing more than 98,000 apartment units reported 2015 NOIs that were 5.22% higher than 2014. NOI was averaging about $6,870/unit in 2015 vs. $6,529/unit in 2014. NOI decreases were reported on 27% of the units last year.

Freddie Mac loans backing more than 70,000 apartment units reported 2015 NOIs that were 4.72% higher than 2014. Freddie reported NOI was averaging about $11,822/unit in 2015 vs. $11,288/unit in 2014. NOI decreases were reported on just 11% of the units last year.

In conduit CMBS deals, office properties were showing a modest-but-improved NOI average growth rate for 2015 of 2.8%, nearly triple the less-than-1% average annual NOI growth rate in 2014.

Industrial properties too were posting a modest-but-improved growth rate of 3.7% up from 2.5%, according to Wells Fargo.

After spiking in 2014, NOI growth appears to be slowing for hotel properties posting an average of 8.6% in annual NOI growth, down from the 10.9% growth rate seen in 2014, according to Wells Fargo Securities.

The only other major property type to see its average NOI growth slow was retail, checking in with an average increase of 1.7% in 2015, compared with 1.9% for 2014.

Properties backing loans made during 2006 and 2007 -- the last peak year vintages -- are showing NOI growth of 5.1% and 3.1% on average in 2015, Wells Fargo noted.

The NOI growth is a welcome sign and may help to refinance loans reaching maturity, the banking group said.

The decent NOI growth in the post-crisis vintages (2010-2013) also should continue to keep term defaults low, adding to the cushion already provided by historically high underwritten debt service coverage ratios, Wells Fargo noted.

-Mark Heschemeyer

Mostly Vacant Supermarket Site in Monrovia Sells

RENTV.com

 

A 97.5k sf, mostly vacant retail supermarket site in the San Gabriel Valley city of Monrovia traded hands. The price was undisclosed

The property, known as Shamrock Center, is located at 723-727 E Huntington Dr, north of the 210 Fwy between Shamrock and Mountain Aves. It was 90% vacant at the time of the sale with O'Reilly Auto Parts as the remaining tenant.

The center is situated on 6.07 acres of land in a prime location along the Hi-Tech Corridor of Huntington Drive. It offers easy access to the 210 Fwy and a two-minute drive from Mount Sierra College. The Masonry building was originally constructed in 1972 for Kmart.

Scott Martin and James Houghton with NAI Capital represented the buyer, 723 EHD LLC, in the sale.

-Staff

Former Bank Branch Building in Santa Monica Sells for $1,436/sf

RENTV.com

 

A 9.4k sf, former bank branch building in Santa Monica was acquired by Cadence | California, a private developer, for $13.5 mil. That divides out to $1,440 per sf. The property sits on a 30k sf site at 3032 Wilshire Blvd, a couple blocks west of Centinela Ave. Formerly occupied by Bank of America, the site consists of two parcels and a large parking lot, making it an ideal re-development opportunity.

CBRE’S Alex Kozakov and Patrick Wade represented the buyer and the seller, a joint venture between UDR and a local developer. This is the 5th property sold by the team in Santa Monica/West Los Angeles the past month, totaling more than $45 mil in value.

“This sale is symbolic of the high demand for quality retail space and land in Santa Monica,” said Kozakov. “This building sits in one of the hottest neighborhoods in the county that has been seeing tremendous rent growth and appreciation in property prices. There are several exciting development projects nearby.”

“This site on Wilshire Boulevard is zoned for a wide array of re-development opportunities,” said Wade. “The buyer has some exciting ideas that will only improve the already strong desirability of the immediate area.”

-Staff

ICM Gets Building Signage in Century City

GlobeSt.com

 

ICM Partners expands its lease at Constellation Place to 112,000 square feet on the top five floors on the 35-story high rise. The tenant formerly leased 93,000 square feet on the seventh, eighth and ninth floors. The new long-term lease earns ICM Partners exclusive building signage as well.

“Our client was very happy with the Century City setting. It is an incredibly strategic location for a talent agency, providing reasonable access to every place an agent would need to be and offering proximity to wherever a client might be traveling from,” Mark Sullivan, EVP at Savills Studley, tells GlobeSt.com. “The building is also within walking distance of high-end and iconic retail, hospitality and lifestyle amenities including the Century Plaza Hotel and Westfield Century City Mall. Constellation Place is one of the premier office towers in all of Los Angeles, and we were able to negotiate an opportunity for ICM to not only expand within the building but to take the top five floors of the tower. The new space includes a two-story lobby, engineered as part of the original construction, and a five-floor interconnecting stairway, providing both an aesthetic statement and a collaborative environment.” Sullivan represented ICM Partners in the lease transaction.

ICM’s business is expanding and was looking for a larger space. “ICM’s business was expanding and we needed to accommodate that growth through a real estate transaction, whether it was in the agency’s current building or elsewhere,” says Sullivan. “ICM is looking at the new space as an opportunity to create a very contemporary, highly visible and high-quality, yet efficient, setting—one that complements it brand and sets the stage for continued growth.”

ICM is completing a full build out of the space, which will include a two-story sky lobby, outdoor terraces, state-of-art technology and a central and an internal staircase connecting each of its five floors. ICM will move into the space this summer.

Century City’s office vacancy rate fell last year when one of the last large blocks of space in the market was leased. Still, a lease expansion of this size is unique in the market. “This transaction is actually unique to Century City as it involves an expanding business and an expanding tenant, one that is increasing its occupancy by more than 20%,” adds Sullivan. “Most of the activity we have seen in this submarket reflects tenants’ rightsizing—adding additional term but giving back square footage.”

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Shake Shack's Next LA Location Is Century City

Eater LA

 

Shake Shack, coming off their insane West Hollywood opening last week (with lines that still snake around the corner, has quietly planted their next flag: in Century City's mall. Already Glendale and Downtown locations have been confirmed, but this fourth outlet tells you one thing about Shake Shack — they're all about prime retail locations. A tipster sent in the photo above of the plywood, which isn't clear where exactly the burger spot will be located, though will likely be up on the dining deck. There's no projected opening date at the moment.

The New York-based burger chain seems to be going with a full-frontal invasion across Los Angeles. Where should it land next? Hit the comments with your suggestions. If Century City's complete remodel isn't enough, 2017 will bring in Italian mega concept Eataly.

-Matthew Kang

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