Heitman Acquires 17-Asset MOB Portfolio

NexCore Group represented the company and will manage and lease the properties. JLL Capital Markets, which handled the deal for the seller, called the transaction one of the largest in the sector.

Princeton Medical Arts Building_NJ
Princeton Medical Arts Building_NJ

Bentall Kennedy, on behalf of an unidentified state pension fund, sold a 17-building, 1.4 million-square-foot portfolio to an affiliate of Heitman LLC.

The price of the multi-state medical office portfolio, known as the PHT portfolio, was not released but JLL Capital Markets, which represented Bentall Kennedy, identified the transaction as “one of the largest medical office asset sales to have occurred.

Denver-based NexCore Group represented Heitman, a global real estate investment management firm, and will manage and lease the properties.

The PHT portfolio, in most part built after 2005, consists of seven Class A medical office buildings in Texas and five in Indiana, with the remaining assets located in Bolingbrook, Ill.; Columbia, Mo..; Plainsboro, N.J.; Raleigh, N.C., and Richmond, Va. The Texas assets are in Sugar Land, Katy and San Antonio. The Indiana properties are in Indianapolis, Mooresville and Zionsville.

 “We are pleased to continue our productive partnership with NexCore. The PHT Portfolio is a high-quality, well-diversified portfolio of premier properties with near 100 percent occupancy and a collective tenancy of highly-rated, market-leading health systems. The Class A portfolio exhibits nearly all of the qualities that we look for when acquiring core medical office properties for our portfolio,” Brian Pieracci, Heitman managing director, said in a prepared statement.

Ed Christen, NexCore Group managing partner & chief investment officer, called the PHT assets “a landmark medical office portfolio.”

“Our extensive experience in managing physician office space and comprehensive approach to medical asset ownership will enhance the already excellent delivery of health care from the MOBs within this portfolio,” Christen said in prepared remarks.

Bentall Kennedy, one of the largest global real estate investment advisors and real estate service providers, assembled the portfolio over the last 12 years, through new development and acquisition.

“This portfolio attracted a high level of interest from a roster of well-known private and public health-care investors, as well as many institutional core funds and foreign investors,” Mindy Berman, managing director, JLL Capital Markets, said in a prepared statement. “An investment of this caliber is further evidence of good supply of product for new investment in health care. As outpatient care in the U.S. expands and investment appetite supports the growth, large-scale opportunities like this will continue.”

MOB sector surging

JLL Capital Markets experts said the sale builds on the momentum that pushed MOB sales to a record $9.5 billion in 2017, surpassing the previous record of $9 billion in 2015 and substantially higher than the typical annual volume of $5 billion. They expect investor interest in MOB assets to continue as outpatient visits are projected to increase by 20 percent over the next decade. Annual health-care spending is projected to grow by more than 5 percent a year, most of it in out-patient settings.

“Health-care real estate is emerging from the shadows of alternative sectors and is increasingly being viewed as a staple asset,” Jonathan Geanakos, president, JLL Capital Markets, Americas, said in a prepared statement. “Interest in medical office is at an all-time high given the robust capital available for real estate investment, especially from core investors and foreign capital seeking durable income from stable product offering attractive yields.”

Bentall Kennedy has made previous investments in the sector. In late August, Bentall Kennedy Limited Partnership purchased the 101,299-square-foot Oregon Clinic Gateway Medical Office Building in Portland, Ore., on behalf of its U.S. core fund. The purchase, its first MOB investment in Portland, brought its U.S. portfolio of managed MOBs to 23 properties at that time. The three-story building, a LEED Gold-certified facility, was fully leased when sold and had space for medical offices, day surgery, on-site diagnostic imaging and laboratories as well as 3,000 square feet of retail.

Image courtesy of Heitman LLC