The Asset Manager
From Asset Management to Underwriting, An Operator Model That Works
Throughout 2012, it is as though a starting gun was shot and the race to dive back into the commercial real estate game officially commenced. Investors from all over the globe are increasingly re-entering the market and making deals. Several large portfolio transactions have already taken place, with several others in play. The bid/ask spread seems to be narrowing with buyers and sellers. The floodgates have opened, and hundreds of millions of dollars are now being moved into play. With the increase in deal flow and activity, companies must look at their strengths to see how their team can stay relevant in the ever-changing commercial real estate landscape.
Overall, there are indications of a resurgence of excitement about real estate. Commercial real estate professionals who have been focused on helping financial institutions and owners of distressed properties are increasingly being recruited to assist institutions and investors as we re-enter a more active acquisitions phase market cycle.
There is an enormous amount of pent-up demand by equity funds throughout the globe, and market conditions seem to have restored themselves enough to instill confidence in an emerging recovery, while providing risk adjusted returns that meet investor thresholds.
Operators and service providers like Voit can add value to the process through our vertically integrated platform, focused on deep local level expertise in the Western markets we serve. Large investors are often in need of providers who can deliver a variety of local services in a one-stop-shop, while providing all the assistance they need on the ground to facilitate acquisitions and operations.
As investors seek partners in local markets in which they may not have representatives or “boots on the ground,” it is more important than ever for local firms to have a team in place to deliver asset and property management, combined with brokerage and investment services in order to identify and facilitate deals quickly.
For example, at Voit, we have teams of brokers who are keenly aware of which deals are available or coming to market. Combining that knowledge with our acquisitions and asset management expertise, we are well-positioned to provide institutional investors with the business planning, strategy, due diligence, and underwriting they need to analyze and execute both core and value-add investments.
Voit is also capable of bringing co-investment capital to key partnered investment opportunities, ensuring a complete alignment of interest with equity capital sources. While either approach to assisting investors in meeting their investment goals may stand alone; together they transform us into a key strategic partner / operator and acquisitions agent, allowing investors to take advantage of our expertise in whatever fashion meets their needs. Large investors are now looking to our firm to help them acquire, strategize, manage, as well as lease or sell properties in California and throughout the West.
As big equity continues to seek compelling deals in each market, today’s real estate firms must be equipped to assist through the entire process, acting not only as an operator, but also a strategic advisor.
Matt Stephenson is asset manager at Voit Real Estate Services in the Irvine, CA office. He may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. The views expressed here are the author’s own.