James Connor, chairman and CEO of Duke Realty Corp. (NYSE: DRE), participated in a video interview at Nareit’s REITweek: 2018 Investor Conference in New York.
Connor highlighted the continuing growth in industrial rents. In 2017, Duke saw rents on a cash basis grow by about 6.5 percent. In the first quarter, rents grew 12 percent on a cash basis. “That speaks to the strength of the industrial market across the United States,” he said.
Duke Realty has repositioned its portfolio in the last seven years, selling about $10 billion of office, retail, non-strategic land, and medical office building assets. About $4.5 billion of that amount went back into industrial acquisitions, Connor said, with the balance used for new development and deleveraging the balance sheet.
Meanwhile, Connor said he sees little threat from oversupply in any of Duke Realty’s markets.
“On a relative basis, there aren’t any markets that are oversupplied and our development pipeline is as strong as it’s ever been,” Connor said. Duke Realty has about $850 million under development, and 57 percent of that is preleased, he noted. “The development business is very good.”