12/23/2013 | by Sarah Borchersen-Keto
AmREIT Targets Dense, Urban, Affluent Locations

Kerr Taylor, founder, chairman and CEO of AmREIT (NYSE: AMRE), recently joined REIT.com for a CEO Spotlight video interview at REITWorld 2013: NAREIT’s Annual Convention for All Things REIT at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis.

AmREIT is a 29-year-old REIT focused on the ownership, management, and redevelopment of neighborhood and community shopping centers and mixed-use properties located on what the company calls “Irreplaceable Corners.”

Taylor was asked how AmREIT measures such a location, as well as the geographic markets it is considering.

Taylor said AmREIT’s “Irreplaceable Corners” all share a set of attributes known as the “5-Ds”: demographic purchasing power, density of population, demand for retail space, demarcation, and desirability.

Taylor explained that the company targets locations with an average household income of $100,000 in a one-mile radius. In terms of density, AmREIT looks for 45,000 households within a 3-mile radius of its properties. 

“We have a very tight framework where we try to bring that to bear to find the very best retail projects in our primarily Texas markets,” Taylor said.

Taylor was also asked about his views on retail fundamentals.

“I think it’s a tale of two cities,” he said, referring to prospects in urban versus suburban markets. Taylor noted that the densification occurring around AmREIT properties has put upward pressure on prices. “The best and brightest young executives want to live in those 24/7 environments,” he said.

Meanwhile, Taylor reflected on his role as founder of AmREIT, and whether that gives him an extra commitment to the company.

“No one loves a company like its founder. It’s like a child…I think I bring the love and the energy and the desire for AmREIT be the very best it can be,” Taylor said.