Retail Ecommerce Ventures has bid more than $20 million to buy Pier 1 Imports' e-commerce business and intellectual property. The firm, which owns Dress Barn's intellectual property, will be the lead bidder in a bankruptcy court auction for the home goods retailer's assets that's scheduled for Wednesday.
Trade groups including NRF and the US Chamber of Commerce have urged President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and the governors of Maryland and New York to issue national guidelines for requiring mask wearing. "We believe that a national mask standard, implemented locally, offers the surest way to protect public health and promote economic recovery," they wrote in a letter.
A Nareit report found that "REITs and their stakeholders are increasingly recognizing the importance of holistic and interconnected ESG efforts," especially given the impact of the pandemic and recent protests for racial justice. REITs have long focused on environmental issues, and this has led to "significant cost savings, solid tenant and community engagement," and other benefits, according to Nareit President and CEO Steven Wechsler.
A new fund launched by Ziel Feldman's HFZ Capital Group is investing in undervalued REITs and has already acquired shares of Vornado Realty Trust and Ventas. The fund is seeking to raise up to $500 million from institutional investors.
Commercial real estate transactions in May were down 55% from last December due to the lockdown. Sales of hotels fell the most, and were down 85% from December, while sales of apartments, retail, industrial, and office properties were down 40% to 60%, said Nareit economist Calvin Schnure. Standard measures of property prices have not yet shown much effect from the shutdown, in part due to low transaction volumes. Schnure analyzes the likely longer-run impact on valuations in major property sectors.
REITs rebounded last week with the FTSE Nareit All Equity REITs index delivering a total return of 5.2%, ending a string of weekly declines over the prior three weeks. All property sectors rose, led by self storage (6.5%), according to Nareit economist Calvin Schnure, and the infrastructure, industrial, residential and retail sectors were not far behind. mREITs were down about one-half percent.
Commercial property sales have fallen sharply in New York City during the pandemic, with investors buying only 170 properties from the beginning of April to the end of June. That was the smallest transaction total over a three-month period since 2009, according to B6 Real Estate Advisors.
Hedge fund Elliott Management wants Crown Castle International to rethink its approach to its fiber-cable business and bolster its returns. Crown Castle said it is open to dialogue with Elliott and other shareholders, but it also defended its strategy and pointed to returns that have beaten the S&P 500.
Brookfield Properties is developing a 6.2-acre, $450 million project in downtown Nashville that will be the largest mixed-use development in Tennessee. The coronavirus pandemic is affecting plans in the short term, but Dene Oliver, chief vision officer at Brookfield, sees the issue as a temporary setback.