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NAIOP Chicago Webinar Institutional Investors: Navigating the Rest of 2020 | Summary


On Tuesday, April 28, 2020, over 400 NAIOP Chicago members and guests gathered remotely for a discussion focused around “Institutional Investors: Navigating the Rest of 2020”.  Our panel of leading industry experts discussed how COVID-19 has changed (or not changed) their company’s focus, and how they are preparing for the next few months.

Steve Disse, Principal, Colliers International, moderated the four panelists: Carter H. Andrus, Managing Director, Capital Deployment, Prologis, Inc; Laura Hyde, Vice President, Link Industrial Properties; Mary K. Ludgin, Senior Managing Director – Head of Global Investment Research, Heitman LLC; and Ryan Walsh, Director of Acquisitions, Sterling Bay.

The discussion was kicked off with each panelist briefly stating what they are seeing in their specific fields given the current environment. Carter and Laura were cautiously optimistic, pointing out that the industrial sector seems to be avoiding distress for the most part. Mary noted that student and senior housing is where the biggest problems likely lie. Ryan agreed with the other panelists and expanded, “It’s not asset specific, it’s not product type specific, everyone is working through the challenges of this.”

Carter expanded on Prologis’ long-term investment strategies, stating their stability and openness to opportunity. Following a joke by Steve regarding asking if he will have to sell his Corvette, Laura expanded upon Carter’s positivity stating that core product is still being traded. She posed, “I do think there will be more attention paid going forward to how investors look to finance their assets so it can be a real differentiate in times such as these.”

Steve continued by asking Mary what her advice to those wanting to get back into investing is. Mary explained that Heitman’s clients are asking about a couple of things; first, they’re REIT investors. Second, they’re looking at debt strategy. Lastly, is the need for bridge capital. Mary also touched on rent relief. She stated, “What we are trying to figure out is what’s the difference between the opportunistic requests, where there truly isn’t distress, versus the instance where the distress is there.”

Ryan closed off the discussion with his opinion on why Chicago is a place that tenants and employers want to be. He stressed that work-from-home may not be the only option in the future as we may be predicting. Rather, environments of “work, play, live,” such as Lincoln Yards and Fulton Market, are where the real opportunities lie. In regard to co-working space, he said, “they’re really going to face significant challenges.”

The webinar concluded with a Q&A session with questions submitted by the attendees.

Join us for our next Webinar on Thursday, May 21, 2020 focusing on Supply Chain.