Real Estate & Retail

Apartment industry embracing Ball State graduates: Program makes property management a career goalRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Tracy Donhardtreporter
During the 1990s, a booming Indianapolis apartment market was becoming increasingly competitive. About 10,000 units were added to the market in the second half of the decade and professional, well-educated managers to run them were in short supply. Enter the Apartment Association of Indiana, which figured the best way to find the professionals apartment owners needed was to grow their own, so to speak, by creating a post-secondary education degree program for the industry. At that time, Virginia Tech was...
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Bye-bye blight?: Developers grabbing parcels east of Circle Centre mallRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Tammy Lieber
Several groups are floating plans and crunching numbers for downtown hotel or condo projects east of Circle Centre mall, an area that has been largely passed over for new developments in recent years. One of the more imminent projects is a large mixed-use development for the quarter-block at Maryland and Pennsylvania streets, now occupied by surface parking lots and a 9,000-squarefoot office building. A group that includes local developer J. Greg Allen has four separate parcels at the corner under...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Bubble won't burst on commercial real estate investorsRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
David Funke
Winding down his remarkable tenure as chairman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan seems to have chosen "real estate bubble" as one of the themes of his swan song. And with housing prices in some cities soaring, the rest of us as mere mortals can reasonably wonder how long it will be before the bubble bursts and what will be the fallout if and when that happens. Many private equity investors with holdings in commercial real estate are beginning to...
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Browning launching $10 million equity fund: Firm seeking investors for local industrial propertiesRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Tammy Lieber
After 28 years in the real estate development business, Browning Investments Inc. is inviting investors to take a cut of some of its deals. The locally based firm plans to launch a private investment fund to buy properties, mostly central Indiana industrial buildings. Browning officials are working on raising $10 million in equity for a fund that will leverage debt to acquire $30 million to $40 million in properties. They hope the fund will be the first of several. The...
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Herron-Morton planning grows beyond art campus: Foundation hopes to redevelop 3 nearby buildingsRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Scott Olson
Members of Herron-Morton Place Foundation Inc. are ecstatic that city planners chose their proposal to rehabilitate three vacant buildings as part of a larger redevelopment of the former Herron School of Art campus. The dilapidated structures, known as the Foundry buildings, are a block east of the campus. Under the foundation's plan, they will be transformed into retail shops and should benefit from the foot traffic generated by the revitalization of the Herron property on 16th Street. But now comes...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Is exec a fraud or just bad at business? A jury will decideRestricted Content

October 3, 2005
Greg Andrews
Forget Disneyworld. The real excitement in Orlando, Fla., this fall likely will be in a federal courtroom, where Carmel native James T. O'Neal Jr. is scheduled to stand trial on charges he swindled millions of dollars from the rich and famous, including high-profile Indianapolis businesspeople. A federal grand jury indicted O'Neal a year ago on 82 felony counts of money laundering, mail fraud and filing false tax returns. If the 12-person jury finds the 60-year-old Orlando resident guilty, he could...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Charitable trusts: Creating gifts that keep on givingRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Paul Coan
For people who are looking to help a worthy cause, and provide an income stream from a valuable asset, creating a charitable trust may be a good solution. There are various options for the creation of charitable trusts. At most university and charity Web sites, you'll see a reference to them. They've become a popular way for organizations to build their endowment. Charitable remainder trusts With a charitable remainder trust, an individual places assets in the trust-stock, real estate, bonds,...
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Coming changes keep downtown a dining hub: Au Bon Pain coming to Circle, Noble Roman's returnsRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Tammy Lieber
Downtown is still sizzling for national restaurants looking to expand, based on recent deals. Au Bon Pain is cooking up a 2,200-square-foot Monument Circle store, taking over a recently closed Roly Poly Sandwiches shop and the Hardwickes Pipe & Tobacco that has entertained passersby for decades with its caricature statues. The Boston-based chain's arrival in early 2006 will mark one of several dining changes near the Circle and one of the final steps in a tenant retooling of the Guaranty...
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Are you prepared for DISASTER?: Despite warnings, many businesses fail to plan for the worstRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Scott Olson
Are you prepared for Despite warnings, many businesses fail to plan for the worst Frank Hancock didn't have a disasterrecovery plan when a tornado tore past his east-side printing company two years ago, causing $5 million in damage. Severe wind gusts from the Sept. 20, 2003, storm shredded Sport Graphics Inc.'s 5-month-old warehouse and manufacturing facility and tore 13 1,800-pound air-conditioning units from the roof, dumping them on the parking lot below. One was never recovered. Amid the mayhem that...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Does your 401(k) work as well as most pension plans?Restricted Content

September 26, 2005
Ed Snyder
This is definitely not the headline most workers wanted to see on the business section of the newspaper: "Traditional e m p l oy e r- f u n d e d pension plans outperformed worker-funded 401(k) plans during bear market." The findings, based on a study conducted by the employee-ben efit consulting firm of Watson Wyatt Worldwide, bolstered critics' arguments that 401(k) and similar retirement plans are not up to the task, when compared with defined-benefit pension plans, of...
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Winning the wallets of the ultra-wealthy: Local investment firm enters fight for lucrative marketRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Peter Schnitzler
City Securities has placed attorney Stephan Hodge, a former Indiana state securities commissioner, and Kenneth Klabunde, a certified financial planner, at the helm of its recently established three-person Wealth Advisors division. Their goal is to offer portfolio management, tax planning, trust preparation and a host of other financial products to folks with at least $3 million to $5 million in assets. But they plan to deliver it with a level of personal attention few Hoosiers receive. And much of their...
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'1-of-a-kind' Wal-Mart proposed: Michigan developer plans Carmel/Zionsville superstoreRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Tammy Lieber
A Michigan developer plans to build a 300,000-square-foot shopping center anchored by a Wal-Mart Supercenter along Michigan Road north of 106th Street, continuing the rapid expansion of retail on the Michigan Road corridor. Heritage RDG LLC, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based developer new to the Indianapolis market, recently filed plans with town officials in both Zionsville and Carmel to build the center. The 36-acre parcel straddles the Boone-Hamilton county line and must be approved by local governments in both counties. Project...
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Ambassadair likes suitor: Chicago-based Waveland Investments might have jobs for ATA execs if it lands travel clubRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Chris O\'malley
Ambassadair Travel Club Inc. may chart a new destination with the help of a Chicago private equity firm whose holdings range from gas station chain Clark Brands to coffee-pot-maker West Bend. Waveland Investments LLC is the face behind Waveland Holdings LLC, an entity named in court records as signing a letter of intent to acquire Ambassadair from bankrupt parent ATA Holdings Corp. While Ambassadair said it remains profitable, despite ATA's troubles, it has lost more than 20 percent of the...
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Opportunity ... .. or Albatross?: Winona bankruptcy creditors move toward sheriff's saleRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Tom Murphy
A sheriff's sale to the highest bidder may be the fate of the once-bustling Winona Memorial Hospital. Bankruptcy creditors, frustrated that they haven't found a buyer for the vacant near-northside property, plan to seek a foreclosure that clears the way for public auctions of the hospital and an adjacent nursing home. A sale and renovation of the properties could boost the neighborhood surrounding Winona, a part of town that has struggled but is riding a wave of good news the...
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Interest high for soon-to-be-shuttered foundry: Size, location make redevelopment promisingRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Tammy Lieber
When the workers at DaimlerChrysler Corp.'s Indianapolis Foundry clock out for the last time at the end of the month, they'll leave behind 756,000 square feet of factory space, tons of equipment, and more than 52 acres of industrial land on the city's west side. Rather than becoming a rusting industrial relic along Interstate 70, however, the buildings will be razed and real estate experts expect the land will soon find a new use, albeit likely not for a factory....
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IPS seeks property swap: School district will trade prime Mass Ave land if deal is rightRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
Tracy Donhardtreporter
But an unusual component of the soon-to-be-released request for proposals by Indianapolis Public Schools, the property's owner, has many wondering if anyone has what it will take to win the coveted piece of real estate. What it'll take is the offering of a replacement facility where IPS can move its central transportation facility and other school district operations. "That's the general concept," said SteveYoung, chief of facilities management for IPS. "We're not looking to sell it. We would have to...
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CEO Dunn not afraid to shake it up: Changes help Steak n Shake capture Enterprise AwardRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
Greg Andrews
When an executive recruiter contacted Peter Dunn a few years ago about a top post at The Steak n Shake Co., he wasn't sure what to think. "I wondered what kind of steaks they served with milkshakes," he recalled with a laugh. Today, Dunn, Steak n Shake's president and CEO, probably knows more about the company than anyone in its 71-year history. The newcomer to the restaurant industry, a Harvard grad with an MBA from the University of Virginia, has...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Efficient, tasteful design can help maximize productivityRestricted Content

September 5, 2005
Sandi Kramer
Productivity. Comfort. Longevity. While the old saying about location applies to most commercial real estate decisions, the issues of promoting productivity, providing a comfortable working environment and choosing materials that last become preeminent after the lease is signed. current space-is not something you do everyday. If you're part of a mid-sized or small business, then it's highly likely that you're juggling real estate decisions at the same time you're trying to advance your business. As a result of this pressure,...
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Staffing agency seeks bankruptcy protection: Morley Group begins reorganizing $5.3 million debtRestricted Content

September 5, 2005
Scott Olson
The 13-year-old staffing agency already owes the bank $1.94 million-a $1.17 million loan used to construct its headquarters and about $768,000 for operating expenses. President Michael Morley blamed poor economic conditions for the filing. He said the company hopes to emerge from bankruptcy quickly. "Our business is just now starting to come back and increase," he said. "We're going to be able to straighten this out. We're not taking this lightly." Other debts listed in the bankruptcy filing include a...
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Computer Renditions: Technology firm building from plateau Computer Renditions on target to grow revenue in 2005Restricted Content

September 5, 2005
Susan Raccoli
Being robbed in broad daylight on your first day as a small-business owner is not exactly a good omen, but it didn't stop Computer Renditions Inc. founder Christopher Stater. Stater was headed to a meeting with IT consulting client Anheuser-Busch one morning 11 years ago when he was accosted in a Columbus, Ohio, hotel parking lot. A robber sprayed his face with a chemical fire extinguisher and stole his briefcase. "They made me go to a hospital," Stater remembered, "but...
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Real estate veteran gets back into sales: Andrew Banister joins CB Richard Ellis team in red-hot marketRestricted Content

September 5, 2005
Tammy Lieber
In the past five years, local real estate veteran Andrew J. Banister has changed jobs four times. With the most recent switch, Banister is right back where he started-with the investment sales team at the local office of CB Richard Ellis. Banister, 55, on Aug. 29 began his first official day working with John Merrill and Gary Woodworth, who in recent years have engineered sales of some of the city's most prominent office buildings at record-high prices. It's a familiar...
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Stadium neighbors see rising property values: Investors, entrepreneurs eye southwest side of downtown 70Restricted Content

August 29, 2005
Tammy A.
The south end of downtown may not qualify as the hottest real estate market in town, but since plans for a new stadium were unveiled in January, the largely industrial area surrounding it has definitely heated up. Plans call for the stadium to be built on a two-square-block site bordered by Capitol Avenue, and South, Missouri and McCarty streets, now mostly occupied by surface parking. In the area surrounding that parcel, real estate sources report rising land prices and increased...
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EYE ON THE PIE: How home buyers step off a cliffRestricted Content

August 29, 2005
Morton Marcus
Why does Indiana have such high bankruptcy and mortgage foreclosure rates? No one knows. Many say the economy in Indiana has been responsible for our troubles, but other states have been hit as hard and not had the same bankruptcy and foreclosure problems. Perhaps we are a state of dreamers, people who want to own a home but do not understand the obligations we assume. Our dreams are encouraged by the federal government, which allows mortgage interest and property tax...
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Pension fund opens coffers: $506M could be boon for venture capitalistsRestricted Content

August 22, 2005
Peter Schnitzler
The Public Employees' Retirement Fund, Indiana's largest pension system, is preparing to unleash half a billion dollars into venture capital, real estate and other privateequity investments. And the fund's managers aim to put the bulk of it to work inside state lines. Hoosier venture capitalists are salivating at the prospect. T h a t 's t h e equivalent of nearly seven BioCrossroads Indiana Future Funds. "If there are excellent opportunities to invest in Indiana, we ought to be looking...
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Real estate investment trusts buck slump predictions: REITs outperforming major stock market indexes so far this year; Simon, Duke and Kite doing well locallyRestricted Content

August 15, 2005
Jo Ellen
For the second quarter, the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts Composite Index posted a return of 13.52 percent, boosting its year-to-date return to 4.9 percent. For the quarter, that's more than three times any of the other equity indicators, the highest of which, the Russell 2000, posted a 4.32-percent return. The Russell 2000 also has the second-highest year-todate returns at 5 percent. Real estate investment trusts are due for a downturn, according to many stock analysts, but they've...
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