1.4 MSF National Industrial Portfolio Pulls in a Rumored $80M
By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor
The Columbia Portfolio, a nearly 1.4 million-square-foot group of industrial properties, has changed hands and the word on the street is that it fetched $80 million. With the assistance of commercial real estate services firm CBRE Group, Lincoln Property Co. sold the 10 Class A facilities to Cabot Properties Inc.
“[Cabot] provided the most comfortable terms that allowed us to go in and work with existing lenders on in-place financing,” Josh McArtor, a senior vice president with CBRE, told Commercial Property Executive. “So it was not only a very good price, but it was incredibly flexible. It allowed my clients to go in and substitute different assets so we could sell these free and clear.”
The portfolio has an average occupancy level of 95 percent and it covers quite a bit of ground. Three of the properties are located in metropolitan Boston and another two sit within close proximity of Dallas. Two assets in Swedesboro, N.J., and another two in Newark, Del., offer a presence in the Philadelphia area. Rounding out the group is a facility in Phoenix.
The industrial sector hasn’t yet reached the level of popularity among investors that the apartment sector enjoys, but it is certainly moving up on buyers’ radar; the Columbia Portfolio transaction is a case in point. The collection of assets, which CBRE marketed for separate transactions by metropolitan area, attracted life insurance companies, pension funds and institutional capital. Portfolios are particularly popular and McArtor anticipates that the number of such major transactions will only increase.
“Buyers are getting more comfortable with the overall economy, they’re getting excited that they’re seeing their existing portfolios starting to move in the right direction,” he said. “Even on the smaller Class C spaces the rents are stabilizing. Everyone feels like we’re in a true recovery mode, and because of their confidence they’re willing to take down bigger investments in the industrial sector.”
And the fundamentals bode well for long-term success.
“All indications point to a very healthy market over the next couple of years with very little construction compared to what we’re used to in a real estate cycle,” said McArtor.