Thursday, April 30, 2009

Paris Hotel Chain Matches British Airways Free Flights Deal by Offering 5,000 Free Room Nights

(PARIS)--Accor Hotels is investing about $738,466 on a promotion it hopes will bring it new future international business.

The Paris-based lodging chain is matching a free flights offer being announced by British Airways, Avis and The Daily Mail in London as part of the Backing Britain campaign launched this week.

(Eiffel Tower, Paris, top left photo)

As one of the leading global hotel groups with over 4,000 hotels worldwide and as a preferred hotel partner to British Airways and UKTI, Accor Hotels will match the airlines’ offer of 5,000 free flights with 5,000 free room nights worldwide, to anyone that qualifies for the British Airways offer.

Frédéric Fontaine, Accor head of sales, marketing and distribution, UK and Ireland says, "We are wholehearted supporters of this campaign.

“Small businesses are the beating heart of the British economy and it's absolutely right that their importance and value is recognized and supported.

“It is with great pleasure that we back this outstanding initiative and offer 5,000 free nights to match small medium enterprises earning 5000 free British Airways flights.

“This initiative is in line with our longstanding commitment to small businesses for who we offer a free to join the small business enterprise scheme – called Accor Away On Business -- providing them with instant registration and access to up to 10% discounts on our best on line rates across 1,300 hotels and seven brands (Sofitel, Pullman, Novotel, Mercure, Ibis, All Seasons and Hôtels Barrière) to match all budget needs.”

Fontaine says the promotion also includes an upgrade to its AIClub worldwide loyalty program. “With Accor Hotels, small business enterprises can lower their costs without lowering their standards,” he adds.

Accor’s offer of 5000 free room nights represents a half a million pound investment ($739,466 US) to encourage trade and travel to stimulate international business.

Grubb & Ellis Names Two New Vice Presidents

Thomas Green is Vice President, Industrial Group

MARLTON, NJ– Grubb & Ellis Company (NYSE: GBE), a leading real estate services and investment firm,announced that Thomas Green, CCIM, (top right photo) a 21-year veteran of the commercial real estate industry, has joined the company as vice president, Industrial Group, effective immediately.

“Tom brings an extensive knowledge of the Southern New Jersey market as well as the experience of representing a broad range of clients and having been on the investor/developer side of the business,” said Bob Clements, executive vice president and managing director of Grubb & Ellis’ Philadelphia-area offices. “We are excited about the wealth of experience he brings to our Industrial Group.”

Green joins Grubb & Ellis from First Industrial Realty Trust, where he was an investment officer responsible for acquisitions and dispositions throughout the Philadelphia and Baltimore/Washington regions.

During his three years in this role, he acquired $49 million of industrial buildings totaling 1.4 million square feet. Green joined First Industrial as a senior marketing and leasing manager in 2003 and was responsible for marketing and leasing a 2-million-square-foot portfolio throughout South New Jersey.

Contact: Erin Mays, 312.698.6735,

Fred Cochran is Regional Vice President in Florida

SANTA ANA, CA – Grubb & Ellis Realty Investors LLC announced that Fred D. Cochran (top right photo) has joined the company as a regional vice president in Florida. Cochran will also be a registered representative of Grubb & Ellis Securities Inc., the broker-dealer affiliate of Grubb & Ellis Realty Investors.

In his new role, Cochran is responsible for raising equity for Grubb & Ellis Realty Investors’ real estate investment trust programs (Grubb & Ellis Apartment REIT and Grubb & Ellis Healthcare REIT) in the state of Florida. Cochran will work closely with John Wilkins, senior regional vice president for the Florida region.

“With 13 years of investment real estate experience, Fred joins Grubb & Ellis Securities backed by a successful track record and an in-depth understanding of the markets,” said Randy Beckman, executive vice president of sales.

Contact: Damon Elder, 714.975.2659,

CB Richard Ellis Retained by 7-Eleven to Evaluate Rental Rates in Key Markets

TAMPA, FL– CB Richard Ellis (CBRE) has been engaged by 7-Eleven, Inc. to conduct a comprehensive review of its real estate portfolio in key markets nationwide. The project will include analyzing fair-market values for 7-Eleven's retail sites and negotiating lease terms, when appropriate, in line with current commercial rental rates.

CBRE's team will be led by Senior Vice Presidents Michael G.Friedman (top right photo) and Will Evans from the Dallas office. Friedman has worked with 7-Eleven for more than 20 years. While many other retailers are contracting, 7-Eleven is focused on growing its store base by approximately 200 stores this year.

"7-Eleven is an investment-grade tenant in expansion mode during challenging economic times," said Dan Porter, vice president of real estate for the convenience retailer. "Working together with CBRE, our objective is to partner with property owners to determine how we both can succeed for the long term and survive these difficult market conditions through deal restructurings, lease negotiations and new site development."

In an effort to align rent expense with current market rates, CBRE, on behalf of 7-Eleven, has begun a formal review of all leased stores in its real estate portfolio. CBRE/7-Eleven expects to enter into discussions with property owners to negotiate terms and restructure lease agreements where discrepancies between rental rates and market values exist.

"This is prudent business practice for any retailer during these unusual economic times, particularly with the footprint that 7-Eleven has nationwide," says Friedman. "Through our analysis, we believe we will discover solutions that will assist 7-Eleven in reducing its overall operating expense."

Additionally, 7-Eleven's real estate development team is evaluating sites for new development opportunities with other landlords who may be experiencing lease defaults or retail flight by their current tenants. The company operates about 5,700 stores in the U.S. under the 7-Eleven® brand and opened approximately 170 stores in 2008.

Contact: Lauren Crawford, 813.273.8482,

Mark One Capital Arranges $3.22M Loan for Texas Retail Center

BEAUMONT, TX – Mark One Capital has arranged a $3.22 million loan for the acquisition of Beaumont Fountain Plaza, (top right photo) a 23,524-square foot multi-tenant retail center, located at 3050 N. Dowlen Road in Beaumont, Texas.

Geoffrey Harris, (bottom left photo) a senior director in the firm’s Phoenix office, and Farhan Kabani, a senior associate in the firm’s Dallas office, arranged the financing package for the property.

Beaumont Fountain Plaza was classified as an un-anchored retail asset,” says Kabani. “Mark One Capital was able to overcome the objection that the center was un-anchored due to the property’s high-historical occupancy levels, strong tenant mix, rental rates and premier location.”

Financing for Beaumont Fountain Plaza was provided by a commercial bank at a fixed rate of 6.04 percent for the first five years, then adjusting. Terms of the loan were for 25 years with a 25-year amortization schedule. The loan-to-value was 65 percent.

“An added benefit for our client was that we were able to close the loan in less than 40 days,” adds Kabani.

Press Contact: Kathy Molitor, Mark One Capital, (925) 953-1704,

Richmond, VA Office Leasing Still Steady Despite Soft Sales Market

RICHMOND, VA: Metro Richmond was dealt some bad cards to start off the new year, yet is weathering the string of corporate downfalls and looks to turn the corner later this year, according to Perry H. Moss, (top right photo) Regional Director of Research, GVA Advantis, Richmond, VA.

The sales market has all but evaporated.

The leasing market, however, is relatively steady as tenants know that now is the time to strike that ideal lease. Other fundamentals have been damaged with only moderate effects.

Despite the almost daily influx of negative economic news, the metro area maintains seven Fortune 500 companies, down just one from last year.

Recent corporate import, MeadWestvaco announces 2,000 layoffs, leading them to bypass multiple floors at their still under construction CBD HQ.

Circuit City no longer exists. Capital One, a major local employer reported lowered than expected 1st Q earnings while laying off nearly 60 employees.


Perry H. Moss CCIM, MBA
Regional Director of Research
Advantis Real Estate Services Company
707 East Main Street, Suite 1400
Richmond, VA 23219
Tel 804.672.4248
Fax 804.783.1920