Another Year for
The Record Books
THIS ISSUE MARKS THE 71ST YEAR THAT
REAL ESTATE FORUM has featured our Annual Review
& Forecast, where we look back and the trends and
successes of the past you and, more importantly, try
to project where the market and industry may be headed in the coming year.
Doing so, however, is always a crapshoot, as I’m sure many of you readers have surmised by now. I mean, who would have guessed this cycle
would have lasted as long as it has? That commercial real estate would
continue to be flying high, compared to other investments, for so long? That
we would have a former reality TV star and mail-order steak peddler as the
leader of the free world?
I, like many would-be prognosticators out there, have given up on making
any sort of predictions. Yet nothing’s stopping any of us from guessing—
and there are many possibilities out there. Our national reporter and financial guru, Erika Morphy, along with some of the industry’s thought leaders,
examines some of those potential scenarios in our cover story, “Waiting for
that Growth Spurt,” on page 26.
And none of our Annual Reviews would be complete without our look
at some of the most significant transactions of the prior year. Some of the
biggest sales, leasing, finance and development deals that made the list
weren’t surprising given their size, but there were quite a few unexpected
finalists, particularly in the non-core markets and sectors. Those, of course,
are proof of the growing trend of investors seeking opportunities—and
yield—in secondary and tertiary locations.
What was particularly interesting, however, was the significant number of
portfolio and merger transactions that took place last year. Honestly, when
we set out to compile them all, we didn’t expect the list to be as long as it
was. That’s because most investors we’ve spoken with over the past 12 to
18 months have lamented greatly over the dearth of such opportunities. If
the closings of 2016 are any indication, bulk deals aren’t dead yet.
On a side note, we said recently had to say goodbye to a longtime REM
family member. After 37 years with the company, our leader and vice president, Michael Desiato, announced his in-tention to pursue other opportunities in the business.
You can read his farewell column in our special commentary on page 24.
On a personal level, his departure is particularly bittersweet, because I literally grew up with Michael. He hired me, and has served as my boss, mentor, guide and friend for over a decade. I wish him well on his endeavors
and I’m sure we will continue to work together in the years ahead.
America’s Premier Real Estate Business Magazine
Vice President & Group Publisher Editor-in-Chief
Michael G. Desiato Sule Aygoren
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