ROIC CEO Says West Coast Strength Key for REIT

Stuart Tanz, CEO of Retail Opportunity Investments Corp. (NASDAQ: ROIC), joined REIT.com for a CEO Spotlight video interview during REITWeek 2015: NAREIT’s Investor Forum, held in New York.

Tanz said the fundamentals in Western markets have helped drive the firm’s strong operating results. Additionally, the company is benefiting from its focus on necessity-based retail assets, such as grocery stores and drugstores, according to Tanz.

“That product type has created a lot of demand in terms of tenant demand as well as sales,” Tanz said.

Tanz also noted that ROIC has been operating on the West Coast for roughly 30 years, giving the company a firm understanding of its target markets.

Regarding ROIC’s acquisitions activity, Tanz noted that the company has picked up nearly $1 billion of assets in the past 18 months. Tanz said ROIC is expanding its portfolio to continue to take advantage of the strength of the West Coast markets. He added that new supply has been muted.

Tanz also offered his opinion on the advantages of being in the necessity-based retail sector in both stronger and weaker economic environments. He pointed out that occupancy rates and sales in the sector generally hold firm when the economy slumps.

“Historically, when you look at the necessity-based retailing, it has held up the best in the retail segment in good and bad times,” he said. “More importantly, during the good times, sales tend to trend up very nicely.”