BALTIMORE-With a hefty cash balance waiting to be deployed, ProLogis is seeking out new acquisition opportunities in the Baltimore-Washington Corridor. Mark Levy, VP and Baltimore/Washington DC market officer for ProLogis tells that the firm is actively looking at both building and land acquisitions. However, it would be more likely for the firm to create value–the sweet spot in this current uncertain environment–with a building trade, especially if that building is empty.

Levy declined to provide details about potential spend or the number of possible deals the firm may close, other than to say many of its current acquisition interests are off-market opportunities. Areas in which it is looking range from Baltimore County to Prince George’s Count as well as Washington, DC and Northern Virginia.

A typical approach the firm might take would be similar to what it has done with a 109,000-sf distribution center near the Baltimore/Washington International Airport that it acquired late last year–along with nine acres of land–for approximately $9.5 million from Osprey Property Group LLC. The facility, located at 1901 Park 100 Dr. in Glen Burnie, MD, remained empty until late this summer when it inked two deals with investment grade tenants: HBI Priority Freight, a third-party logistics, air and ground transportation services, leased 83,000-sf and DHL picked up 26,000-sf.

The trick, in this current environment, is to be able to balance the purchase price with a very soft lease market, Levy says. It took several months to line up the two tenants in Glen Burnie, he notes. “We worked very hard to get them.”

We want to acquire a building substantially below replacement cost, and have enough time to lease it up,” he says. “It’s not easy, but “it can be done if the deal is underwritten correctly.”

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