Westmount Realty Capital Recapitalizes 6.1 Million Square-Foot Industrial Portfolio in Chicago and Milwaukee

February 7, 2022

Westmount Realty Capital, a privately held, Dallas-based commercial real estate company announced today that it is partnering with a fund managed by the Real Estate Group of Ares Management Corporation (“Ares”), a leading global alternative investment manager, to recapitalize a 51-asset industrial portfolio totaling 6.1 million square feet located in established industrial submarkets of Chicago and Milwaukee. Westmount and Ares acquired the institutional-quality portfolio of logistics, bulk distribution, and last-mile industrial properties from a Partners Group and Westmount joint venture.  Partners Group is a leading global private markets firm.

Partners Group and Westmount Realty Capital aggregated the portfolio, which consists of primarily infill, multi-tenant light industrial properties that provide enduring functionality and long-term leasing optionality, between 2014 and 2017. The majority of the portfolio is located in the Chicago MSA, and the largest cluster of assets is proximate to O’Hare International Airport. The portfolio is currently 98.8% leased to a roster of 123 national and regional tenants with an attractive lease rollover profile. The top 10 tenants in the portfolio account for 42.5% of the total leased area with no single tenant accounting for more than 9.9% of the portfolio.

“This is a gratifying day for us, and it speaks to Westmount’s tenacious approach to asset management and value-add investment strategy,” said Cliff Booth, Westmount’s founder and chairman. “Westmount has been active in the industrial market for more than 35 years, and that knowledge helped us gather this collection of institutional-quality industrial properties.  We are pleased to recapitalize and reinvest in this portfolio and look forward to working with our new partner Ares as we continue to drive further value across this portfolio.”

Driven by a highly connected rail and highway system, Chicago is an international trade hub for the Midwest, as well as a critical market for distribution networks. Its highway system serves 9.5 million residents, and 30% of all U.S. freight originates or passes through Chicago. The city also continues to rank as a top 5 market for net absorption of industrial space nationally.

“The attributes of the properties within the portfolio — size, design and location — are difficult and expensive for industrial developers to replicate, further driving increased occupancies and rent growth trajectory,” said Brant Brown, Westmount’s president and COO. “The combination of strong tenant demand, coupled with limited new supply of infill industrial product, is expected continue to drive rent growth throughout the portfolio in the coming years.”

Michael Caprile with CBRE and Josh McArtor with Eastdil handled the transaction on behalf of the seller.

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