CRE Capital Markets RoundUp: VICI Properties Completes $1.6 Billion Refi of Caesars Palace

Newly established REIT VICI Properties Inc., formed out of the bankruptcy restructuring of Caesar’s Entertainment, has completed a $1.6 billion refinancing of its flagship property – Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs & Co. and Barclays Bank were the lenders. The loan carries a fixed interest of 4.36% and has been folded into a new CMBS offering (Caesars Palace Las Vegas Trust 2017-VICI.) VICI collects…

GSA Looking to Lease Up to 2 MSF for 2020 Census Offices

The U.S. General Services Administration’s (GSA) released 208 additional short-term lease requirements for the U.S. Census Bureau to be procured via the Automated Advanced Acquisition Program (AAAP) and GSA Leasing Support Services (GLS) contract. These requirements are in addition to the 37 requirements released in mid-July, bringing the total to 245 requirements nationwide. GSA will procure local Area Census Offices throughout the country…

Panera Acquiring Au Bon Pain Under Aggressive New Expansion Initiative

Panera Bread has reached an agreement to acquire Au Bon Pain Holding Co., the Boston-based bakery-cafe chain of 304 units which was started by the founders of Panera Bread. The deal marks a new strategy for St. Louis-based Panera, which itself was acquired three months ago and is transitioning to new leadership. It is the first step in Panera’s “initiative to intensify growth in new real estate channels, including hospitals, universities,” airports…

Six CEOs of Real Estate Firms Listed Among World’s Best-Performing by HBR

Debra Cafaro CEO of Ventas was only one of two women listed on the entire list. Credit: Harvard Business Review Six CEOs of North American real estate firms were included in the most recent Harvard Business Review annual list of the 100 best-performing CEOs. The list, which appears in HBR’s November-December issue, differs from other business leader rankings in that it measures performance for the entire length of a chief executive’s tenure…

Leasing Rebound Drives Quarterly Earnings Growth for Publicly Traded CRE Brokerages

CBRE Group, Inc. President and CEO Bob Sulentic, left, and JLL Chief Executive Christian Ulbrich reported brisk tenant demand in the third quarter of 2017. The largest publicly traded global CRE services firms reported solid results for the third quarter and year-to-date periods amid stronger-than-expected leasing and steady sales activity, despite a declining supply of available properties on the market. The generally robust earnings reports…

With $1 Billion in Debt Repayment Looming, Sears Closing Another 63 Stores

Beginning the week by fully tapping into what remained of an available $200 million line of credit, Sears Holding (NYSE:SHLD) closed the week by announcing that it will shutter another 63 stores before those borrowings come due next spring. The company notified employees at 45 Kmart stores and 18 Sears stores that their stores will be closing in late January 2018 but will remain open during the holiday sales season. The stores are located in…

US Apartment Demand Bounces Back from Slow Down in Early 2017

Renter demand for apartments continued to accelerate in the third quarter of 2017 as the market absorbed more than 70,000 units and the overall national vacancy rate for U.S. apartments continued to trend lower after turning sharply up at the end of last year. “The third quarter (vacancy) numbers are a welcome sign (for owners) after the sharp increase at the end of last year. Overall, it was a strong third quarter, which was a nice surprise,”…

Tax Reform Bill Draws Cautious Support from CRE Industry Leaders

From right, House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX), Tax Policy Subcommittee Chairman Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Roundtable President and CEO Jeffrey DeBoer meeting during The Roundtable’s fall meeting in Washington, D.C. on Oct. 3.Credit: Real Estate Roundtable CRE industry leaders who worried that the largest rewrite of the U.S. tax code in more than three decades would eliminate like-kind 1031 exchange transactions or curtail the ability…

Hyatt Ups Asset-Light Strategy, Begins Efforts to Sell $1.5 Billion in Hotel Properties

Having met its goal of becoming a net seller of hotel properties in 2017, Hyatt Hotels Corp. (NYSE:H) has decided to extend that strategy for another three years. The international hotelier intends to dispose of at least $1.5 billion of properties in that time, and just this month completed the first sales toward that goal. “With the recent sale of two hotels and the completion of nearly $250 million of share repurchases in the third quarter, we…

Rent-A-Center’s Board Weighing Options for 2,500-Store Chain

Rent-A-Center Inc. (NASDAQ/NGS: RCII), one of the nation’s largest rent-to-own store operators, announced plans to consider options including a sale of the chain which operates approximately 2,500 stores in the U.S., Mexico, Canada and Puerto Rico. The Plano, TX-based company also announced that its chairman, Steven L. Pepper, resigned from his position effective today. Pepper informed the company that his resignation was a result of his disagreement…