Happenings in CRE - Week in Review

CRE News & Reading: Week of 06/01 – 06/05

Why do so many tech companies inhabit Class B buildings? According to a recent article from CNBC, these companies are shifting some focus from customers to employees. Tech companies are, “more interested in making [their employees] happy—retaining them—than impressing clients with fancy finishings in the space,” writes Diana Olick. With tight budgets, many of these companies are investing more in technology than “glitzy spaces.” Seems like a reasonable trade-off?

In other CRE news:

  • CRE capital raising on the rise: Some of the biggest institutional investors -- like Almanac, Blackstone, Berkshire, TPG -- are all in the process of fundraising for CRE investments. Looks like competition for favorable assets will continue to rise in the coming years.

  • Fed Beige Book: CRE improved in most federal reserve districts: The Federal Reserve released the most recent Beige Book this week, which highlighted overall positive economic trends. CRE leasing and construction activity was noted to be strong.

  • REITs off to a rocky start in 2015: 2014 was a great year for REITs. 2015, not so much. According to FTSE NAREIT US Real Estate Index, the total returns for equity REITs are actually “in the negative territory at -0.32 percent.” There is some expectation of a recovery by the end of the year.

  • General Electric’s HQ could be on the move: General Electric (GE) might be moving from its HQ in Fairfield, Connecticut. The motivation appears to be dissatisfaction with the state’s plan to raise taxes. “Reports that Connecticut officials intend to raise taxes by another $750 million are truly discouraging," the company’s statement read.

  • Park Avenue office towers mount a comeback: Although overall development of new office towers has been slow, Park Avenue is expected to soon boast a new 897-foot skyscraper. The project developer, L&L Holding Co., and its partners secured $556 million for the development.

  • Tishman Speyer completes $200 million office deal in San Francisco: Tishman Speyer has acquired its sixth office building in San Francisco, and for a hefty $200 million price tag. This marks the largest commercial buy in San Francisco this year. The building is located at 160 Spear Street.

  • Tallest Seattle tower said to sell for over $700 million: Seattle’s Columbia Center will have new owners. A group led by Gaw Capital Partners has acquired the building for over $700 million, a record for an individual office building in the city. The investment is another example of foreign investors making domestic acquisitions.

  • 10 markets with highest asking medical office rents: NREI compiled a list of the 10 markets with the highest medical office rents. California had the most number of cities on the list, but none of its locations stole the number one spot. Can you guess which metropolis did?

Billy Fink
Billy Fink
Billy Fink is a former member of the VTS team.
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