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Equity Office Daily Brief: September 22, 2017

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Daily Brief

September 22, 2017

  EquilityOffice

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Hewlett Packard Enterprise to cut 5,000 jobs, 10% of its workforce, report says

L.A. Times

 

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. is planning to lay off at least 5,000 employees, or about 10% of its workforce, according to a business media report. Bloomberg reported Thursday that the job cuts, which will occur in the U.S. and abroad, are expected to...

 



BLOG & ONLINE NEWS

 

Why Oxnard Is Popping Up On The Radar

Globe St

 

Oxnard has been getting a lot of attention lately. A retail sale recently broke the cap rate record and the multifamily development is starting to pop up. Now, lenders are taking an interest. A recent construction loan in the market won...

 


Lyft Wants To Reduce Traffic On Wilshire Boulevard And Add Autonomous Cars

BisNow

 

Lyft says it may have a solution to the traffic mess that is Wilshire Boulevard. The ride-hailing company is partnering with designers at Perkins+Will and Nelson/Nygaard on a conceptual project to redesign Wilshire Boulevard, Engadget reports. The proposal includes reducing the street...

 


"Pen Factory" Office Complex Opens in Santa Monica

Urbanize LA

 

Developers Lincoln Property Company and Clarion Partners have completed work at the Pen Factory, according to an announcement from Morley Builders. The project, which repurposed an abandoned manufacturing facility adjacent to the Expo Line's 26th Street/Bergamot Station, features over 200,000 square feet of modern offices and 76,000 square...

 


Higher Yields Pull Office Investors toward Value-Add Acquisitions

National Real Estate Investor

 

Sales velocity in the office sector is starting to catch up to last year’s levels. Second quarter sales volume reached $31.5 billion, just 3.6 percent off transaction volume in the second quarter of 2016, according to the latest Office Investment report from real estate...

 


Is The US Still A Safe Haven For Foreign Capital?

Globe St

 

The US maybe losing its rank as a safe haven for foreign capital. According to experts at the Los Angeles Headquarters Association’s Capital Idea: Financing Development in L.A., Asian investment in Los Angeles has slowed this year; however, the US is still...

 


Target expands its next-day delivery service, now reaches 70+ million customers

Tech Crunch

 

Target’s next-day delivery service focused on everyday essentials, which has been in testing over the summer, is now expanding to eight major metros, making it available to over 70 million people, or about one-fifth of the U.S. population. The service allows online...

 


A Positive Outlook For Multiple Sectors Is Driving CRE

BisNow

 

Across sectors, the outlook is good for commercial real estate, though some cities and sectors are stronger than others. Some of the industry's power players recently shared their perspectives about the market. It is nice to see that industrial, which has often taken a...

 

FULL TEXT


Hewlett Packard Enterprise to cut 5,000 jobs, 10% of its workforce, report says

L.A. Times

 

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. is planning to lay off at least 5,000 employees, or about 10% of its workforce, according to a business media report.

Bloomberg reported Thursday that the job cuts, which will occur in the U.S. and abroad, are expected to begin before the end of the year. HP Enterprise did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Times.

HP Enterprise was created in 2015 as a result of Hewlett Packard Co.’s split into two companies. HP Inc. sells personal computers and printers; HP Enterprise focuses on commercial technology services and products.

Before the split was finalized, Hewlett Packard said it would reduce its staff by 25,000 to 30,000, with most on the enterprise side of the business.

Since those cuts, HP Enterprise has continued to slim down. This month the Palo Alto firm completed a spinoff its software units.

HP Enterprise is led by Meg Whitman, who was reportedly being considered for the chief executive position at ride-hailing firm Uber after the resignation of co-founder Travis Kalanick. Whitman tried to quash those rumors over the summer, tweeting that there was “a lot of work still to do at HPE and I am not going anywhere.”

Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi accepted the Uber post in August.

By Samantha Masunaga Contact Reporter

Why Oxnard Is Popping Up On The Radar

Globe St

 

Oxnard has been getting a lot of attention lately. A retail sale recently broke the cap rate record and the multifamily development is starting to pop up. Now, lenders are taking an interest. A recent construction loan in the market won an 80% loan-to-cost, and other lenders, from small banks to specialized debt funds, are beginning to show interest as well.

“Developers want to develop, and lenders want to lend,” Max Mellman, VP with Quantum Capital Partners, tells GlobeSt.com. “When the supply of urban infill locations dwindle, developers and lenders pivot with the state of the market and expand their scope of investment strategies to include suburban markets.”

The recent interest in the Oxnard market is an effect of the limited availability of infill available land and the high multifamily rental rates. “Lenders are always interested in financing class-A projects of all shapes and sizes in the core markets in Los Angeles such as Downtown and the Westside; however, with the difficult and lengthy entitlement process in Los Angeles along with the high price of land, it is often difficult and expensive to build within the city limits,” says Mellman. “For those multifamily projects that do get built, developers need to price units out of the reach of most renters if the project is to pencil.”

Mellman says that the spike in interest is a direct result of the development challenges in these other—typically popular but also built out—urban-infill markets. “Both developers and lenders recognize difficulty to develop in infill markets, and as a result, we are seeing more multifamily development in first ring submarkets around Los Angeles such as Oxnard and other Ventura County cities, to meet the demand for working class families who are being priced out of LA’s core markets such as Koreatown, the Westside and the South Bay,” he says.

In addition to space and demand, Oxnard and the surrounding Ventura County markets have other strong characteristics that are attractive to both developers and lenders. “These submarkets are typically distinguished by great schools, tight multifamily supply, and rising single-family home prices,” adds Mellman. “They also must have in place a transportation infrastructure that allows residents a relatively easy commute to jobs in the region.”

BY KELSI MAREE BORLAND 

Lyft Wants To Reduce Traffic On Wilshire Boulevard And Add Autonomous Cars

BisNow

 

Lyft says it may have a solution to the traffic mess that is Wilshire Boulevard.

The ride-hailing company is partnering with designers at Perkins+Will and Nelson/Nygaard on a conceptual project to redesign Wilshire Boulevard, Engadget reports.

The proposal includes reducing the street to just three traditional lanes to help reduce traffic. That counterintuitive move would be paired with two autonomous bus lanes and a loading zone for car-sharing pickups. There would also be two bike lanes and wider sidewalks.

The proposal follows Lyft's autonomous vehicle partnership with Drive.ai, FastCoDesign reports.

The argument has been made that ride-sharing is one of the reasons traffic has worsened, since it puts more passengers in cars who might otherwise use public transit. With pedestrians, cyclists, autonomous public transit riders and car pools, Lyft officials say Wilshire Boulevard could serve up to 77,000 people per hour instead of the 29,600 it is serving today strictly as a 10-lane road.

The company is also working with the Southern California Association of Governments on a campaign that aims to improve local streets. By Karen Jordan, Bisnow Los Angeles

"Pen Factory" Office Complex Opens in Santa Monica

Urbanize LA

 

Developers Lincoln Property Company and Clarion Partners have completed work at the Pen Factory, according to an announcement from Morley Builders.

The project, which repurposed an abandoned manufacturing facility adjacent to the Expo Line's 26th Street/Bergamot Station, features over 200,000 square feet of modern offices and 76,000 square feet of subterranean parking.

Architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrilldesigned the commercial reuse project, which divided the long-vacant building into two smaller structures.  In an homage to the property's former tenant - the Papermate Company - the exterior of the buildings feature a series of colorful striations that are called "pen-lines."

Video streaming company AwesomenessTV has reportedly leased 90,000 square feet of the building, which will serve as its new headquarters.

Lincoln and Clarion acquired the property in 2015, after a transit-oriented development originally planned for the site saw its approvals rescinded by the Santa Monica City Council.  The proposed development from Hines had called for a mixture of apartments, offices and pedestrian-oriented commercial space.

In addition to the Pen Factory, a new office building is under construction a short distance north at Colorado Boulevard.

by STEVEN SHARP

Higher Yields Pull Office Investors toward Value-Add Acquisitions

National Real Estate Investor

 

Sales velocity in the office sector is starting to catch up to last year’s levels. Second quarter sales volume reached $31.5 billion, just 3.6 percent off transaction volume in the second quarter of 2016, according to the latest Office Investment report from real estate services firm JLL.

Investors continue to prefer core and core-plus investment strategies, but some of their focus has shifted to value-add class-B assets as class-A asset values have risen to levels that provide little appreciation in a maturing cycle, notes a new cap rate survey report from real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield. This strategy is especially favored in markets with higher overall cap rates and where the spread between class-A and -B assets is above average, providing upside potential with capital improvements.

The decline in capital appreciation opportunities in core central business districts (CBDs) is also causing investors to switch their focus to select assets based on their income component, the JLL report notes. Finding any opportunities in CBDs that provide good income is becoming increasing difficult.

While overall CBD office cap rates increased by 11 basis points to 6.07 percent for Class class-A projects and by 18 basis points to 7.07 percent for class B projects, Cushman & Wakefield reports that office cap rates in major markets have remained flat or declined. Boston and Manhattan tied for the lowest class-A cap rates at 4.00 percent, followed by San Francisco and Seattle at 4.38 percent and 4.50 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, suburban caps increased by 21 basis points to 7.06 percent for class-A projects and by 21 basis points to 8.03 percent for class-B projects. Currently, private investors are dominating the suburban office markets, but with suburban assets offering higher yields than core assets, Cushman & Wakefield researchers expect institutional investor activity to increase in select secondary markets.

Sustained tenant demand has resulted in 29 consecutive quarters of positive absorption in the office sector, causing rents at class-A CBD office buildings to rise 35.7 percent since the second quarter of 2010. While demand for space in amenity-rich CBD buildings remains strong, rising rents are driving some tenants to the suburbs, where rents are lower, according to Jim Postweiler, JLL managing director in the Chicago office.

Many tech firms also favor suburban office campuses for consolidating or expanding operations, notes Stephen Newbold, national research head with real estate services firm Colliers International.

Postweiler adds that with higher construction costs, which have risen by 20 percent in some markets, rents at CBD projects will continue to climb and drive more tenants to seek space in lower-cost suburban buildings.

“The buyer pool for suburban assets has deepened over the last few years,” says Postweiler. “There is a growing appetite among investment funds and family office investors for higher-risk suburban assets that offer better returns than in CBDs.”

Private investors have been buying up value-add suburban properties for some years, he notes, and their foresight is beginning to pay off. “Currently, there’s a very good buyer audience for stabilized projects, as value-add owners complete lease up and exit projects.”

Two types of suburban office properties are particularly popular with investors: those in suburbs with good transit connections, like the O’Hare submarket in Chicago, and live-work-play suburban areas, where the office building is located close to retail, apartment and lodging developments.

An example of a recent suburban investment play was the acquisition of Parkwood Crossing Office Park in Indianapolis by a joint venture of value-add investor Rubenstein Partners L.P. and Indianapolis-based Strategic Capital Partners for $162.9 million, Postweiler notes. Located in the Carmel submarket of Indianapolis, the eight-building, 1.2-million-sq.-ft. office campus was developed by the seller, Duke Realty Corp., between 1989 and 2005 and has attracted corporate users because of its access to a highly educated talent pool.

The Rubenstein/Strategic joint venture plans to differentiate the project as a unique suburban campus with substantial capital improvements. The redevelopment will improve building mechanical systems and aesthetics and reconfigure existing floor plates to create collaborative workspace. The plan also calls for constructing a stand-alone, state-of-the-art amenity center, with dining, fitness and conference facilities, and creating a new trail that will provide pedestrian access throughout the campus.

By Patricia Kirk 

Is The US Still A Safe Haven For Foreign Capital?

Globe St

 

The US maybe losing its rank as a safe haven for foreign capital. According to experts at the Los Angeles Headquarters Association’s Capital Idea: Financing Development in L.A., Asian investment in Los Angeles has slowed this year; however, the US is still an attractive place for investment and the slowdown isn’t expected to affect MSA pricing.

“So far in 2017, Asian capital flows into real estate have slowed, especially in development,” Randy Zisler, CEO of Zisler Capital Associates, tells GlobeSt.com in an interview following the panel discussion. “Asian capital flows into L.A. and San Francisco as a share of total MSA commercial transactions volume has increased from 2010-2014 to 2016-2017, but the current percentage is still small—5.7% in L.A. and 7.4% in San Francisco—but is unlikely to affect MSA pricing.

Charlie Rose, senior director of structured investments at Invesco Real Estate, noticed a similar trend in Asian investing, and wondered if the global perception of the US market is shifting. “In the past six months we have seen a few cracks in the global perception of the United States as a safe haven for capital, but on a relative basis US real estate remains an attractive investment for both onshore and offshore investments,” he tells GlobeSt.com.

In terms of pricing, Asian investors typically pay more for US assets, and in the past have used it as a tactic to detour competition and gain a foothold in the market. “After controlling statistically for other factors, such as CBD location and building size, Asian cap rates are 43 basis points lower, which means that Asians pay about 6% more at the time of acquisition,” says Zisler. “This apparent overpayment, which is not much, may be dynamically efficient in terms of exploiting first-mover advantage and creating an Asian ownership beachhead.”

The discussion didn’t only focus on Asian investment. In general, construction financing has become difficult and pricing is beginning to become a major challenge. “Construction financing has become increasingly scarce at the same time as high construction costs and land costs as well as regulatory constraints have conspired to reign in future supply,” Rose says.

Rose says that Invesco is beginning to become more conservative as a result, and has outlined specific criteria for would-be construction borrowers. “At this stage of the cycle, our debt business is focusing on generating current income by originating prudent loans with substantial equity and value subordination to high quality borrowers with resilient balance sheets,” he says. “We take a bottom up approach to debt investing, informed by our research team’s top down view to generate alpha in this environment.”

BY KELSI MAREE BORLAND 

Target expands its next-day delivery service, now reaches 70+ million customers

Tech Crunch

 

Target’s next-day delivery service focused on everyday essentials, which has been in testing over the summer, is now expanding to eight major metros, making it available to over 70 million people, or about one-fifth of the U.S. population. The service allows online shoppers to fill a box with typical household items like laundry detergent and pet food for a flat fee – similar to Amazon’s Prime Pantry offering.

However, Target is currently charging $4.99 per box (up to 45 pounds) versus Amazon Prime Pantry’s $5.99. It also doesn’t require an annual membership, but is available to any Target online shopper in the supported regions.

Orders placed by 2 PM Monday through Friday will then arrive the following day, also faster than Prime Pantry which doesn’t commit to Prime’s two-day delivery schedule. (A schedule, in fact, which has been slipping, some customers complain.)

With the expansion, Target’s next-day service is available in the Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco (mid-October), St. Louis, and Washington, D.C./Baltimore areas. The service was previously available in Denver, Dallas-Fort Worth, and in Target’s hometown of Minneapolis.

Via the Target Restock website, customers can shop from over 15,000 products, including things like cleaning supplies, baby products, beauty and personal care items, dry goods, health products, and packaged groceries, like cereals and snack foods, among other things.

The company says that during its test period, shoppers have most regularly been using the service to order on-the-go snacks, beverages, cereal, mac and cheese, and paper towels – an early indication that people are doing at least some of their online grocery shopping via Target Restock.

That’s notable given the hefty competition in the online grocery market at present. Not only are there independent companies like Instacart and Shipt vying for customers, Amazon just dropped $13.7 billion to acquire Whole Foods, giving it a brick-and-mortar presence inside cities, while Walmart is ratcheting up the competition via its grocery pickup business and even today’s move to start delivering groceries inside customers’ freezers and refrigerators.

The expansion of Target Restock comes alongside other advancement Target is making inside its stores, too, including the release of an updated app that combines its Cartwheel savings with a new Bluetooth beacon-powered indoor mapping component, and soon, a mobile payments service with support for Target REDcard and Target Mastercard. (The app was recently spotted in beta, but Target says that was meant for a small number of internal testers, not the public.)

by Sarah Perez

A Positive Outlook For Multiple Sectors Is Driving CRE

BisNow

 

Across sectors, the outlook is good for commercial real estate, though some cities and sectors are stronger than others. Some of the industry's power players recently shared their perspectives about the market.

It is nice to see that industrial, which has often taken a back seat to other sectors, is becoming the belle of the ball, CBRE Vice Chairman Darla Longo said. E-commerce has made a big impact. Longo is not predicting any type of major downturn for the industrial sector because of the convergence of e-commerce with industrial distribution, she said at last week's Allen Matkins View From The Top Event in Los Angeles. She predicts it could take five to seven years to find the new normal. "As e-commerce emerges, we need more space, larger spaces and the last mile, so it's kind of hitting us from all directions from a capital markets perspective," she said.

LBA Realty is active in industrial. Principal David Thomas said LBA Realty spends a fair amount of resources and effort working directly with corporate America. The company recently completed a deal with a large retailer that is downsizing its supply chain, and Thomas said the firm continues to look for those types of opportunities.

Industrial is not the only sector that is strong. Office continues to perform well, particularly in specific markets. Newmark Knight Frank President of West Coast Capital Markets Kevin Shannon said Seattle is going to continue to lead the office market and Culver City and Hollywood are among the hottest locations for office in Southern California. San Francisco, while popular, has a lack of product, he said. He said debt is driving the market now across all real estate classes.

Santa Monica is a city that has its challenges when it comes to development, according to Worthe Real Estate Group President Jeff Worthe. "We have three entitlement projects in Santa Monica, which is really almost suicidal," Worthe said. He said if the company can get them entitled, it will be gold. The properties are smaller sites, including a two-acre and a five-acre site. "That community is very organized, very committed to trying to stop folks like us," Worthe said of Santa Monica. Worthe said it is also becoming more difficult for the firm to build office buildings where it wants. Kilroy Realty Corp. CEO John Kilroy said he is seeing more demand for office campuses, with the main focus on what companies need in terms of location and amenities to attract and retain employees. "I've never had more fun or been more excited or been more enthused than I am now," he said.

By Karen Jordan, Bisnow Los Angeles

Daily Brief September 22, 2017 unsubscribe

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