10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (February 19, 2015)

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (February 19, 2015)


  1. Chinese Insurer Bags Pricey Fifth Avenue Trophy “Anbang Insurance Group, the Beijing-based insurance company that last year agreed to buy the Waldorf Astoria Hotel on Park Avenue for nearly $2 billion, is now acquiring an office tower in the heart of midtown’s ultra-pricey Plaza district. The company is purchasing the office space at 717 Fifth Ave., a 26-story, roughly 350,000-square-foot office tower, from the Blackstone Group for an undisclosed sum.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  2. The Next Real Estate Crash “Real estate does not crash, it is real estate financing that crashes. Superficially, the real estate market today is stable and steadily recovering, so I am told. When you examine the invisible forces propping up prices, today's market is on shakier ground than the sub-prime or the RTC era.” (Seeking Alpha)
  3. Activist Shareholder Group Eyes Campus Crest Leadership Shakeup “Clinton Group, Inc. and Campus Evolution Villages, L.L.C. are teaming up for a possible takeover of Campus Crest Communities, Inc., the Charlotte, N.C.-based student housing REIT that has been undergoing strategic repositioning since ousting its former CEO and CFO last fall.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  4. A Hilton REIT Spinoff Will Have to Wait “Investors waiting for a Hilton (HLT) spinoff some of its business into a real estate investment trust may have a long wait ahead of them. That’s according to UBS analysts Robin Farley and Arpine Kocharyan, who believe that such a move wouldn’t work at this time.” (Barron’s)
  5. Donahue Schriber Gets $250 Million from Owners to Keep Buying Retail “Donahue Schriber Realty Group, a privately-held real estate investment trust, has gotten an infusion of $250 million in equity from two of its big owners to continue its aggressive pursuit of West Coast retail property, particularly grocery-anchored shopping centers.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  6. Creditors Want Hedge Funds Probed in RadioShack’s Fall “The charge is not that efforts to save RadioShack failed because of bungling or a lack of planning. Rather, the retailer’s unsecured creditors charge that a little-known hedge fund may have shrewdly orchestrated the timing of the company’s Chapter 11 filing to line its own pockets.” (New York Post)
  7. 5 Major Issues Facing Healthcare Real Estate “On Friday, nearly 500 joined us for Bisnow's 4th Annual New York Healthcare Summit at New World Stage where panelist Simone Healthcare Development president Guy Leibler said, “It’s all about moving people out of the hospital to the extent that’s possible.” Now healthcare systems are seeing a need to use the space they have more efficiently, even as they grow and incorporate more outpatient and ambulatory care.” (Bisnow)
  8. RadioShack Was Great at Finding Real Estate. Now Other Retailers Want its Old Stores “Todd Leff, the CEO of the 200-store Hand and Stone spa chain, said he was approached by brokers long before the RadioShack bankruptcy about filling possible store vacancies created by the chain's eventual demise.” (Baltimore Business Journal)
  9. Forest Ranger: MaryAnn Gilmartin on Her 20-Year Career at Forest City Ratner “In April 2013, MaryAnne Gilmartin was named Bruce Ratner’s successor as president and chief executive officer of Forest City Ratner Companies, the development firm behind the Barclays Center and the greater Pacific Park project, MetroTech and 8 Spruce Street. With this “passing of the baton,” Ms. Gilmartin was suddenly the face of the firm, responsible for the company’s continued success and growth.” (Commercial Observer)
  10. Visualizing 60 Years of Change in Houston and Other Cities “Shane Hampton, a member of ULI Oklahoma and a fellow at University of Oklahoma’s Institute for Quality Communities, created these animations to show the dramatic change that has occurred in various American cities. For example, just two original buildings remain in Oklahoma City’s downtown core from the 1950s.” (Urban Land)
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