10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (August 25, 2015)

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (August 25, 2015)


  1. The Real Estate Play on Pokemon Go: Data Centers and Telecom Towers “When the Pokemon Go augmented reality smartphone game exploded onto the scene in July, traders quickly latched onto any investment threads connected to the game, but perhaps the best ways to capitalize on the trends illustrated by the game’s success are in real estate. Though Nintendo shares soared as the game racked up users, pushing the scuffling Japanese gaming company’s market cap billions of dollars higher, investors soon came to terms with its limited share of any windfall from the game’s success.” (Forbes)
  2. U.S. Commercial Real Estate Benefits from Brexit Vote, New Global Classification Sector “Transwestern reports these positive indicators for commercial real estate even as the U.S. economy loses some steam. April and May sales and consumption numbers were strong, but corporate profits, business investment and job growth continue to decline, leading to an underwhelming second-quarter GDP growth of 1.2%. Commercial real estate has enjoyed positive fundamentals and ample liquidity on the equity side, but the debt side saw some contraction in the first half of 2016, primarily in CMBS and bank financing.” (EconoTimes)
  3. Fed’s Kaplan: Case Strengthening for Rate Hike Soon “The case for increasing interest rates is building, Dallas Federal Reserve President Robert Kaplan told CNBC on Thursday, but he refused to put a timetable on a possible move. While he's not a voting member on the central bank's policy committee in 2016, Kaplan rotates in next year. A strong August jobs report, released by the government on Sept. 2, should not be interpreted as a sign the Fed would hike rates later in the month, Kaplan told ‘Squawk on the Street’ from Jackson Hole, Wyoming.” (CNBC)
  4. A Third of Airbnb Revenue Comes from Apartments Converted into Hotels, Says Study “While Gov. Andrew Cuomo ponders legislation to sharply restrict advertising of Airbnb rentals, a new study from the data-based website FiveThirtyEight shows that at least a third of rentals are commercial—meaning entire homes or apartments are rented out for much of the time. Using information scraped from Airbnb’s site, FiveThirtyEight analyzed both the share of commercial listings and the percentage of Airbnb's revenue they generate in the 25 largest markets across the country.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  5. 9 Questions Entrepreneurs Should Ask Before Investing in Commercial Real Estate “Is commercial real estate (CRE) a good investment for entrepreneurs? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer. While CRE can provide investors with better returns than residential properties (an average of six percent to 12 percent annually versus one percent to four percent in residential properties), they also require more of an initial cash outlay. Entrepreneurs need to know the facts about commercial real estate before deciding whether it’s a good investment for them. Here are nine things to consider.” (Business 2 Community)
  6. City Releases Long-Awaited Plan to Spur Office Development in Midtown East “The city published Monday its plan to allow bigger and more modern office towers in midtown east—the first step in the formal rezoning of the neighborhood. The long-awaited midtown east proposal would allow the tallest buildings to be erected right next to Grand Central Terminal, increasing the current permitted maximum density by about 30%. ‘This would be the highest as-of-right density allowance in the east midtown subdistrict, reflecting the [city's] planning policy of focusing density in areas with excellent access to transit,’ wrote the Department of City Planning in documents posted on its website.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  7. Tishman, Trinity Join $500M NoVa Project “AECOM’s Tishman Construction unit and TRINITY Group Construction have been tapped as joint general contractors of Phase 1A of Gramercy District, a technology-focused, mixed-use development that will be built in the Washington, D.C., suburb of Loudoun County, Va. 22 Capital Partners, a venture builder company and global private equity firm that invests in commercial real estate, technology and clean and renewable energy, is the lead investor.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  8. Apollo Partner Flew Girlfriend to Paris on Investors’ Dime “Private equity giant Apollo Global Management will pay $52.7 million to settle charges it misled investors on fees — including having a former partner charge roughly $200,000 in personal expenses to its funds and the companies it owned. In settling the probe on Tuesday, regulators did not name the former Apollo executive, but The Post has learned he is 40-year-old Ali Rashid. Rashid billed the funds for the expense of flying his girlfriend around the world, sources said.” (New York Post)
  9. Laguna Development Bets $135M on Louisiana Casino Hotel “In an effort to boost its holdings beyond New Mexico, Laguna Development Corp.’s newly formed Kicks Entertainment unit has agreed to buy the Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles in Westlake, La., for $134.5 million from Isle of Capri Casinos Inc. Laguna Development is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Pueblo of Laguna and the third largest casino operator in New Mexico. Based in Albuquerque, N.M., and the Laguna Pueblo Indian Reservation, the company currently manages the Route 66 Casino Hotel outside Albuquerque, the Dancing Eagle Casino near Grants, N.M., and a truck stop casino, Casino Express.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  10. There Will Soon Be Just One Howard Johnson Restaurant Left in the U.S. “There will soon be just one Howard Johnson restaurant left in the U.S., as its other location in Maine prepares to shutter. The Bangor restaurant—part of a chain that once numbered more than 800 eateries—will close on Sept. 6, the Associated Press reported. The last Howard Johnson restaurant is in Lake George, N.Y. The owners of the Bangor restaurant, David and Sally Patel, said they had struggled to keep the business going in recent years.” (Fortune)
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