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Real estate investors coming to Valley for REITWorld 2009
Filed under: General, Real Estate, Finance
Posted by: Lillian Wong @ 3:24 pm

Phoenix Business Journal - by Jan Buchholz Friday, November 6, 2009


About 1,000 of the world’s most savvy corporate real estate investors will be in Phoenix next week for REITWorld 2009, the annual conference of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts.


The three-day event at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa will cater to the issues surrounding REITs, public and private entities that pool individual investors’ money to purchase large commercial and residential portfolios.


Some of the largest publicly traded REITs will be represented at the conference, including Macerich Co., Prologis and Camden Property Trust.


According to NAREIT, its members represent about $500 billion in commercial real estate assets.


“The key themes will be capital market activities, in particular equity offerings, debt markets and the (initial public offering) outlook. We’ll also take a look at acquisitions and how REITs can avail themselves of those opportunities,” said NAREIT spokesman Matt Bechard.


While REIT­World attendees represent huge pools of investment money, there’s no telling if any of them will slip away to scout out distressed commercial properties.


“I can’t say for sure if anyone will be looking at acquisitions while in Phoenix, but REIT executives are smart managers, many of which have a diverse geographic portfolio,” Bechard said. “The industry as a whole has strengthened its balance sheets through issuing equity and debt and (is) in a position to make acquisitions when opportunities arise.”


But Gary Linhart, managing partner of Phoenix-based Via West Properties LLC, said he doubts Phoenix will be foremost on the minds of the REIT heavy hitters. He’s one of just 15 people from Arizona registered for the event.


Via West traditionally has acquired local commercial properties, but recently started a new division that invests in REITs.


“REITs buying distressed opportunities in this market will be difficult for them,” Linhart said.“Once the fundamentals in Phoenix stabilize, the (REITs) may change their perspective.”


Reitworld 2009

Where: JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa, Phoenix
Who: 1,000 REIT executives expected
When: Nov. 11-13

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