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Healthcare Trust of America CEO Emphasizes Importance of Asset Location

07/10/2014 | By Sarah Borchersen-Keto

Scott Peters, chairman, president and CEO of Healthcare Trust of America, Inc. (NYSE: HTA), joined REIT.com for a CEO Spotlight video interview during REITWeek 2014: NAREIT’s Investor Forum, held in New York.

Founded in 2006, Healthcare Trust owns and operates medical office buildings. Ninety-six percent of its buildings are located on hospital campuses or aligned with health care systems.

With the growing emphasis on outpatient care, Peters was asked what type of feedback the company is receiving from tenants regarding the features or services that they would most like to see.

“What we’re hearing most is that location is key to the physician group or health care system,” Peters responded.  “They want buildings that are very synergetic to their business or practice.”

He noted that health care providers are focused on attracting additional patients as well as ways to grow revenues and increase efficiency.

“We like to make sure our buildings are well-maintained and are well-located so that we can offer those folks those kinds of services,” Peters said.

Meanwhile, with REITs accounting for a growing presence in the medical office arena, Peters was asked what impact this could have on the property class.

He explained that more capital is flowing into the sector due to its increasing popularity.

“It gives folks opportunities to get invested in the space, and I think that’s great for medical office buildings for the next five to 10 years,” he said.

Peters was also asked about the company’s plans to expand beyond the 27 states where it currently owns assets.

“We’re always looking for good markets,” said Peters, who highlighted the company’s recent investments in Boston, Miami and Baltimore. On a combined basis, these acquisitions total $200 million and include approximately 444,000 square feet of gross leasable space, 88 percent of which is located directly on health system campuses.

“We’ll continue to build out those markets,” Peters said.