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IAMC News Briefs—Week of July 24, 2023

By John Salustri

Blackstone’s Link Logistics Picks Up FL Park for $162M

COMMERCIAL OBSERVER—Quiet Waters Business Park, a two-building industrial site in Deerfield, FL, has a new owner in Link Logistics. The Blackstone affiliate paid $162 million for both assets, roughly $240 per square foot for the 675,140 total square feet in the deal. The seller, PGIM, the asset-management arm of Prudential Financial, assembled the sites 20 years ago for over $10 million.


Knight-Swift Projects U.S. Xpress Profitability Next Year

TRANSPORT DIVE—It’s been only a few weeks since we reported Knight-Swift’s $800-million takeover of beleaguered U.S. Xpress, but the new parent is already seeing improvements. After three quarters of operating losses, U.S. Xpress stands to break even in the first half of next year, based in large part on the $6 million in operational savings new ownership has already uncovered. “We still target positive earnings accretion for 2024 and [we will] reach the $1 per share of earnings accretion milestone in 2026,” president and CEO Dave Jackson said.


Amazon Leads in Multi-Story Warehouse Builds

IAMC CORNERSTONE—"Amazon is paving the way for the U.S. industrial market to densify where demand for space is high and available land is scarce.” So says Colliers in its recent report, “Amazon Leads U.S. in Building Multistory Warehouses.” Indeed. Ninety-two percent of class-A warehouse/distribution assets with three floors or more have been occupied by the e-commerce giant. But Colliers seems to be tracking a broader market trend, reporting that Amazon’s percentage slips among under-construction properties as other players jump on the multistory bandwagon. The e-tailer holds a slightly less robust 70% of these projects. “This is still a significant market share, although it is less, indicating other companies, primarily third-party logistics, are buying into the concept.”


Affinius Capital Originates $91M Loan for Houston Park

COMMERCIAL OBSERVER—Affinius Capital has originated a $90.6-million loan to help a JV led by Dalfen Industrial seal the deal on a four-building, 1-million-square-foot industrial park. The Houston deal delivers to the JV four buildings boasting 32-foot clear heights. “As the Port of Houston continues to expand, the demand for high-quality industrial buildings only grows, allowing the sponsor to successfully execute its business plan,” said Affinius managing director Tom Burns. “Tenants are attracted to the project due to its accessibility to the Houston metro region and the strengthening demographics of its rooftop growth.” (Affinius was formed from a JV between USAA Real Estate and Square Mile Capital.)


VW Meets New German Supply Chain Human Rights Laws

SUPPLY CHAIN DIVE—Volkswagen Group is upping its human rights game in the wake of new German laws requiring more supply chain due diligence. The automaker has some 59,000 suppliers in 90 countries. The greatest human rights risks, the company said in a statement, comes at the resources-mining level. Included in the initiatives the firm has made over the past year are: increased due diligence with battery suppliers; joining the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance; and entering a dialog with the Responsible Lithium Partnership via a hydrological study on water-related risks in Chile mining operations.

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