Bull - Bisnow
The improving debt and equity markets were in the spotlight
at Bisnow’s 4th
Annual Atlanta Capital Markets Summit
, held Tuesday morning at the W Hotel
in Midtown. The event featured two panels, one focused on debt and the other on
equity.

The debt panel was moderated by Michael Bull, president of
Bull Realty and host of the “Commercial Real Estate Show” radio program.
Panelists included Ed Coco of GE Capital, Melissa Frawley of Wells Fargo Bank,
Rod Reppe Jr. of Goldman Sachs Commercial Mortgage Capital and John Charles of
Trimont Real Estate Advisors.

The equity panel was moderated by Michael Hartman of CohnReznick. Panelists included
Steven DeFrancis of the multifamily firm Cortland Partners and Russ Paper of
MetLife Real Estate Investors.

Below are four brief summaries of the
many interesting – and sometimes lighthearted – opinions voiced during the
event.

• What Institutional Investors Want. Paper provided some insight into what equity investors are after when he
outlined MetLife’s investment criteria. The company is enthusiastic about
multifamily and is “trying to be more aggressive” in its investments in
industrial facilities and grocery-anchored shopping centers, he said. The firm
is more hesitant when it comes to office and hotel properties, Paper added.

As for
geography, “we have a penchant for larger markets,” Paper said. 


Real Estate Values Will Continue to Rise.
An improving economy
and a lack of new construction in recent years mean real estate values should
continue to climb in coming years, panelists noted.

Analyzing the economy, Coco said,
“[Federal Reserve Chairman Ben] Bernanke has taken a lot of heat, but I think he’s played it very
well. I’m very optimistic … The markets will stabilize, and we’ll be fine
long-term.” 


Honesty Is Always the Best Policy.
Several members of
the debt panel noted that those
applying for a loan and those who are upside down on their loans should be
upfront with their lenders about any and all problems. “Tell us everything at the beginning … ,” Reppe said. “We’ll
eventually find [any problems].”

Not disclosing one problem only makes
lenders think, “What else is this guy hiding?” Reppe added. Total disclosure
“just makes everybody so much happier,” he said.

• Atlanta Commercial
Real Estate Figures Like Their Grunge Rock (and Their Italian DJs).
In
response to a question from Bisnow emcee Will Friend, both DeFrancis and
Frawley replied that their favorite band is the legendary grunge group from
Seattle. Hartman informed attendees that the Beastie Boys are his favorite
musicians, and, in something of a surprise, Bull replied that his favorite is
Italian DJ Benny Benassi.