Two Birmingham CRE firms join forces

The Business Journals | January 08, 2020

Brookmont Realty Group has joined forces with Graham & Co. LLC. The combination of the two Birmingham firms will create one of the largest commercial real estate firms in Alabama. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, Brookmont was founded by Charles Simpson and David Walker in 1997, with Bo Grisham and Eddie Nobinger eventually joining as principals. The firm focuses on Class A office management, development, leasing and brokerage. Our teams have found opportunity to collaborate on several projects over the years,” said Charles Simpson, principal at Brookmont Realty. “We have partnered on investments and brokered transactions together. We have complementary business processes and a great working relationship. Brookmont shares several core values with Graham & Company, and we are incredibly proud to combine our talents. Graham & Co. manages more than 10 million square feet of office, warehouse, industrial and retail space throughout Alabama and Florida. It has offices in Huntsville and Florida, in addition to its headquarters in Birmingham. Over the past two years, Graham has completed $275 million in lease transactions and completed more than 150 sales.

Spotlight

According to Forbes, real estate has minted more billionaires today than any other asset class. Real estate tokenization is an emerging trend representing the convergence of real estate investing and blockchain technology.

Spotlight

According to Forbes, real estate has minted more billionaires today than any other asset class. Real estate tokenization is an emerging trend representing the convergence of real estate investing and blockchain technology.

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Embrey Expands Footprint in Austin, TX with Acquisition of Arboretum Oaks

Embrey | May 18, 2022

Embrey, a diversified real estate investment company based in San Antonio, Texas, has acquired the Arboretum Oaks apartment community. Located in Austin, Texas, the 252-unit property built in 1984, marks the first acquisition, and 25th asset that Embrey has either developed, owned, or operated in the greater Austin area. Embrey's nationally recognized, award-winning Embrey Management Services will take over property management duties at the community. Located less than 15 minutes northwest of downtown Austin and five minutes west of The Domain, Arboretum Oaks offers numerous competitive advantages in terms of its accessibility, community amenities and walkable proximity to retail. Through the purchase of Arboretum Oaks, Embrey will be leveraging the explosive, pent-up demand for rental properties in a market that has added more than 80,000 jobs since 2016. Despite continued in-migration, low housing supply, and strong job creation, Austin's Arboretum area has seen only one apartment community developed since 2000. This is a beautiful community with great access to the Arboretum, The Domain, downtown Austin, and a number of highly sought-after employers such as Apple, Amazon, and Facebook, to name just a few. We plan to fully renovate the property to bring it up to current market standards and renter expectations. Combining the property's prime location and remarkable bones with the red-hot rental demand of Northwest Austin makes this a terrific investment for our company." Alex Sampson, Vice President of Acquisitions at Embrey Fueled by the nation's leading job and population growth, the Austin area has one of the hottest apartment markets in the country. Asking rents are now up roughly 25 percent since the start of the pandemic, well ahead of the national average. Most recently, as of the first quarter of 2022, occupancy in Austin increased three percent to 96.4 percent according to Witten Advisors. "This acquisition signifies another step in expanding Embrey's acquisition platform and capital base," says Sampson. "As a vertically integrated, diversified real estate investment company, we continue to seek acquisition opportunities like this to create value for our capital partners." Embrey partnered with Black Salmon Capital on this acquisition with debt being funded by an affiliate of Heitman LLC, a global real estate investment management firm. Embrey and its partners were assisted in this transaction by Walker & Dunlop investment sales brokers Matt Pohl and Spencer Roy, as well as debt brokers Patrick Short and Tom Toland. About Embrey  San Antonio-based Embrey is a diversified real estate investment company that owns, develops, builds, acquires and manages multifamily and commercial assets in targeted markets across the United States. Since 1974, Embrey has developed more than 44,000 apartments and over 6 million square feet of commercial property. Embrey is a leading developer in the multifamily sector, with more than 6,000 units under construction or in development.

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Venterra Realty Acquires Keystone Apartment Community in Killeen

Venterra Realty | July 27, 2022

Venterra Realty recently acquired the Keystone Apartments, a community located in Killeen, Texas. The 212-unit multi-family community offers modern one- and two-bedroom garden-style residences that range from 479 – 916 square feet in six unique floor plans. The apartments feature open concept layouts, private outdoor space, bay windows, vinyl wood flooring, eat-in kitchens, and outdoor storage closets. Located in the Killeen-Temple market along Interstate-35, the area is strategically located between Austin and Dallas/Fort Worth and is within 180 of all 4 large Texas markets (Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin). Just minutes to I-14 the property is easily accessible to the area's major employer in Killeen, Fort Hood, a United States Army base that employs 37,000 active-duty military personnel and civilians. Venterra will complete a unit upgrade program and implement its resident-focused programs such as the Live it. Love it. Guarantee.TM, the 48-Hour Maintenance Guarantee, and SMARTLEASING. "We have seen excellent growth in the Killeen area, and are excited to expand our Texas portfolio with the addition of Keystone, Venterra has become known as a company that is committed to providing a market-class living experience, and we look forward to identifying opportunities to further enhance the standard of living at Keystone by implementing Venterra's customer-focused management platform," added Venterra Chairman, Andrew Stewart. John Foresi, CEO of Venterra Realty About Venterra: Founded in 2001, Venterra Realty owns and manages over 70 communities and more than 20,000 apartment units across 16 US cities that provide housing to over 38,000 people and 12,000 pets. The organization has completed approximately $8.0 billion in real estate transactions and currently manages a portfolio of multi-family real estate assets valued at approximately $4.0 billion. Venterra is committed to improving the lives of its residents by delivering industry-leading customer experience.

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Ascot Corp., an Associate of Ping An Group, has Started a Real Estate Fund Management Business in Japan

Ascot Corp. | May 09, 2022

Ascot Corp. has formed the first private fund through a joint venture with global institutional investors to invest in MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housing in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Main Investment Properties of the Fund "ASTILE" is MF residential brand winning the Good Design Award twice last year, and "FARE" is the brand winning the Award seven times for the five consecutive years. *The Good Design Award is the only comprehensive design evaluation and recommendation system in Japan that covers a wide range of fields from industrial products to business models and event activities. Overview of the Fund and Strategy The investment targets of the Fund are MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housing, and their locations are limited to the Tokyo metropolitan area where are expected to provide stable cash flows with little impact from the Covid-19 pandemic and high liquidity on exit, and consequently stable investment results. Furthermore, the investment risks can be identified within the limited scope and in a quantitative manner due to the predefined properties. The portfolio of the Fund No. 1 comprises of 9 properties, mainly MF residential developed by Ascot (including ASTILE Harajuku, and ASTILE Nishi-Shinjuku II etc.). In the near future, Ascot plans to expand the scope of its fund in collaboration with global institutional investors by acquiring MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housings from external developers and funds, in addition to properties developed by Ascot. Ascot manages these properties as the asset manager of the Fund. The Growth Strategy of Real Estate Fund Business Department The Real Estate Fund Business Department, established in 2021, is a new business unit of Ascot that leverages the company's design and quality property development capabilities cultivated over the past 20 years since Ascot's founding in 1999, as well as its domestic and international network. As one of the key pillars of our mid-term growth strategy, we aim to further expand our business by forming joint venture funds with domestic and foreign investors and new private funds, as well as by entering the REIT and other businesses. In addition to MF residential and offices, which are our strengths, we will target a wide range of asset classes, including logistics, hotels, senior housing, data centers, etc. Furthermore, we are considering entering some asset classes from the development stage. The Fund Business Department will contribute to the growth of the real estate investment market by continuously providing optimal solutions and quality investment opportunities to a wide range of investors while expanding total assets under management. Background Under the circumstances of limited investment opportunities under the low interest rate policy and globalization trend of investment, there has been a shift in allocations from traditional assets such as listed stocks and bonds to alternative investments, with real estate investment in particular gaining prominence worldwide over the past few years. As the global asset allocation strategy, a certain percentage has been shifted to Asia, and, in comparison to other Asian countries, investment in Japanese real estate has been allocated to a significant degree in terms of core investment. The primary factor is that Japan's low interest rate policy has ensured a relatively large yield gap. Secondly, Japan, centered on Tokyo, has a considerable market size which provides high liquidity on exit. In addition, the infrastructure for investment, such as legal, accounting, and taxation is very stable. Therefore, stable returns are expected to be secured. Consequently, the investment needs and flow of funds from global investors, especially institutional investors, to Japanese real estate have continued even with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the recent depreciation of Japanese yen has also attracted investors' attention to Japanese real estate. The asset classes receiving great attention are logistics and MF residential. Since Ascot has advantage in longstanding residential development business, the first fund focused on residential properties. Comments by Takeshi Nakabayashi, President of Ping An Japan Investment Co, Ltd. Ascot Corp. is the first real estate company in Japan invested by Ping An Group. We are fascinated by Ascot's excellent development track record backed by its ability to plan and deliver high value-added residential and office properties. We have high expectations for the growth of Ascot's new global business, including the real estate fund management business just launched, the development of logistics facilities, and integrated services from real estate brokerage to property management for global investors. About Ascot Corp. Ascot is a global comprehensive real estate service provider targeting Tokyo metropolitan area. The business includes the development of the MF residential and logistics, fund management, real estate brokerage for global investors, and property management leveraged by its design and high-quality property development capabilities as well as its domestic and international network. Its design and development capabilities cultivated over the past 20 years are highly recognized, as the track record of winning the Good Design Award 14 times in total shows. Through Digital Transformation, Ascot aims to provide quality real estate services in line with global standards by enhancing customer contact and creating new revenue models.

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