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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry (Dec. 4, 2020)

Blackstone and Colony Capital are taking advantage of the strong demand for industrial properties with new transactions, reports Hotels are looking to air filtration and treatment systems to market their COVID-19 safety, according to The New York Times. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Explaining the Frenzy in the Housing Market “Ever since the housing market has emerged from its pandemic-driven freeze in late spring, there has been a frenzy of home buying and a sharp rise in prices. The common explanation is that the pandemic has swollen the ranks of those who need more private space for work and play and safety, typically farther from urban centers.” (The New York Times)
  2. Blackstone Buys $358M Industrial Portfolio in Sale Leaseback “Blackstone has extended its substantial industrial holdings a bit more with its acquisition of 13 properties from Iron Mountain in a $358 million sale leaseback transaction.” (
  3. The Newest Hotel Amenity? Virus-Scrubbed Air “When the coronavirus first hit, hotels quickly adopted enhanced cleaning polices, including germ-killing electrostatic spraying and ultraviolet light exposure in guest rooms and public areas. But as research on virus spread has shifted focus from surface contact to airborne transmission, some hotels and cruise ships are scrubbing the very air travelers breathe with a variety of air filtration and treatment systems.” (The New York Times)
  4. 2020 Holiday Sales: How, Where and When Consumers Are Buying “The coronavirus pandemic has reshaped the 2020 holiday shopping season, with more people buying gifts online and fewer visiting stores. Retailers pushed discounts into October and put their Black Friday deals online. The big shift to e-commerce will test shipping networks in December. The Wall Street Journal is tracking how consumers are spending their money this year. See how the holiday retail season is unfolding below.” (Wall Street Journal)
  5. Colony Capital Exits Industrial Market with $400M Sale “Colony Capital has officially exited the industrial market. The firm has closed the sale of the Colony Bulk Industrial Portfolio for $400 million in value, generating $85 million in net equity proceeds. The sale was the final step in the REIT’s exit from the industrial sector.” (
  6. Friendly’s Owner Hastens Exit from Restaurants with String of Sales “The owner of Friendly’s and Smokey Bones restaurant chains is accelerating its retreat from the casual-dining business, hastened by a string of bankruptcies among the private-equity firm’s portfolio companies and ongoing difficulties in the restaurant industry. Sun Capital Partners Inc., previously an active investor in dining chains, is expected to sell five restaurant holdings in 2020 alone, if it gets court approval for a sale of bankrupt Friendly’s by year’s end.” (Wall Street Journal)
  7. Lincoln Property Sells Phoenix Area Office Asset for $188M “Roughly one year after the opening of Grand2 at Papago Park Center in Tempe, Ariz., Lincoln Property Co. has sold the premier office building to Apex Capital Investments for a reported $187.5 million. The change in ownership of the approximately 358,000-square-foot building, which is fully leased to DoorDash, marks the largest office sale to close in the state of Arizona this year.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  8. Life Sciences Asset Draws $225M from Middle Eastern Investor “Sidra Capital has bought a 90 percent interest in the 855,600-square-foot Arborcrest Corporate Campus in Blue Bell, Pa., from Spear Street Capital. JLL Capital Markets arranged the $225 million deal, with Spear Street retaining a 10 percent ownership. The asset’s tenant roster is dominated by life science and biotech companies, which were of interest for the Saudi Arabia-based buyer.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  9. After Record Online Shopping Spree, ‘All Heck Breaks Loose’ for Apartment Owners “With daily package volume expected to increase threefold this holiday season, multifamily managers seek solutions to their lack of storage space.” (Bisnow)
  10. Dollar Stores Thrive in Pandemic, But Hold Back Forecasts “Dollar General Corp reported better-than-expected quarterly results on Thursday, as the discount retailer benefited from higher demand for cheaper groceries and household items during the coronavirus-induced economic downturn. High unemployment and falling household income this year due to the COVID-19 crisis have boosted demand for lower-priced cereals, vegetables and other essentials, lifting sales at dollar stores.” (Reuters)
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