Oaktree Capital, a major shareholder of Store Capital Corporation (a net lease retail REIT), cashed out Store shares at their highest price since it became publicly traded in November 2014. Until recently, the shares had not suffered significant appreciation, but they are now about a third higher than their initial price.
Oaktree put up for sale more than 33 million shares, almost a quarter of Store’s outstanding shares. However, Store is not pocketing any of the proceeds–all are going to the selling shareholder Oaktree. One main concern was a significant drop in the share price, but it didn’t happen. Prices held up well, demonstrating that interest in this kind of REIT has attracted investors’ interest.
During a period of greater volatility in the first weeks of 2016, we observed that many investors flocked to net lease retail REITs. Companies such as Realty Income and National Retail Properties have appreciated by more than 15% this year, compressing yields to the lower four percent. Store, a net lease retail REIT, has accompanied that trend, as well.
Last December, Oaktree gave signs that Store could fly more freely when their ownership was below 50%. The company ceased to have “controlled status” and was obliged to comply with tighter requirements related to independent directors.
Oaktree is a global investment management firm, specializing in alternative investments with approximately $97 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2015.
Seritage also benefits from the good momentum.
Perhaps the good momentum of net lease retail has positively affected Seritage Growth Properties. The company, which is a spinoff of select stores of Sears Holdings, has caught investors’ attention for its shareholders. Many like the company because Warren Buffett and Bruce Berkowitz have invested in it; the rationale is that they must have access to information other people don’t so it’s a good buy, even though the company is concentrated on a failing tenant and its yield is a meager 2.0%.
Despite finding it a risky strategy, I’ve read a lot of theories why one should invest in Seritage. The most common idea is that there should be upside once the properties are leased to other tenants. Some investors have indicated that by looking at the property level the company is undervalued. The conversion to other tenants should take time and capital so I’d only invest if I knew the company was deeply discounted. Also, there’s a cap of 50% conversion of the properties, so Sears’ concentration should continue in the long haul.
Source: Seritage Growth Properties(NYSE:SRG), STORE Capital Corporation(NYSE:STOR)
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