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The global economy appears to have found its footing and governments are handing over the reins to market forces by scaling back fiscal stimulus. Will the transition be a smooth one? This presentation will examine the economic outlook for Canada and the U.S., including GDP and employment growth, trends in interest and inflation rates, energy and commodity prices, and household and government balance sheets. Where are bond rates and the Canadian dollar headed? Are residential housing prices going to hold up? Will U.S. economic growth bolster the Canadian economy in 2014? Can employment growth keep pace with commercial real estate construction?
Warren Jestin, Senior Vice President & Chief Economist, Scotiabank
After a year of political scandals and intrigue, Canadians will have the chance to change directions or stay the course in municipal and provincial elections in 2014. Should we expect a dramatic shift in direction in response to recent events? Will Torontonians say yes to four more years of Rob Ford? Can the Harper government regain momentum before the 2015 election? Will the Liberal Party resurgence be sustained? Is Ontario headed for a change in leadership? Will President Obama be able to accomplish anything in his second term? One of Canada’s foremost political pundits will discuss the current state of affairs in Canada and around the world.
John Ibbitson, Chief Political Writer for The Globe and Mail, Author of The Big Shift
As the Canadian commercial real estate market enters one of the most dynamic periods in recent memory, there are many misconceptions being conveyed in the press, boardrooms and around water coolers. Are property values certain to fall as interest rates rise? Will traditional retailers be felled by e-commerce? Are office markets likely to collapse under the weight of new construction? Start your year with a review of the hard data underlying market fundamentals and ensure that your business decisions are based on fact, not truthiness.
John O’Bryan, Chairman, CBRE Limited
A wide ranging panel discussion will provide insights into the characteristics of capital for the Canadian real estate market for the year ahead. The participants will offer their views from different points on the compass as they comment on the current credit market environment; what they foresee in 2014 and beyond; how much interest rate creep that we expect and how will it impact on borrowing and acquisitions; will real estate continue to be strongly attractive or is interest in this asset class beginning to soften; is fixed income returning to be a strong alternative; how will access to capital and its cost vary from pension funds to private owners to REITs and REOCs; what risks vs. opportunities are emerging at this time; are private and alternative sources of capital continuing to look at accessing the real estate market; and where will the real estate asset class fit relative to all other investment opportunities for the year ahead. What will be the impact of Basel III and OFSI’s push for greater diversification on the commercial lending activities of major institutional lenders? How much impact or concern is the Canadian housing market likely to have on the credit environment in general?
Peter Sweeney, Vice President & CFO, Allied Properties REIT
Alfonso Graceffa, President & CEO, Otéra Capital
Warren Jestin, Senior Vice President & Chief Economist, Scotiabank
Mark Johnson, Managing Director & Group Co-Head, Canadian Real Estate Investment Banking, CIBC World Markets Inc.
Moray Tawse, Vice President, Investments, First National Financial LP
George Young, Vice President & Portfolio Manager, Gluskin Sheff & Associates Inc.
A cross-section of major Canadian commercial lenders will provide an update on the underwriting practices and deployment of debt capital in 2014. Will sufficient capital be available all year? The session will open with a brief overview of a national annual survey of the Canadian commercial mortgage market activity. Discussion will then focus on the following questions among others:
Mark Achtemichuk, Vice President and Managing Director, CMLS Financial
Mark Edwards, Head of Real Estate & Managing Director, Desjardins Securities Inc.
David Grieve, Director, Mortgage Investments, AIMCo
Bill Schwan, Vice President, Commercial Mortgage Group, Business Banking, TD Bank Financial Group
Jeremy Wedgbury, Managing Director, Commercial Mortgages, First National Financial LP
Greg Wood, Head/Canadian Mortgage Production, Manulife Financial
A new record in Canada was set in 2013 with respect to the dollar value of REITs and securitized real estate. However, the sell-off of REITs that started in the late Spring brought to an end four consecutive years of double digit total returns. As we enter 2014, how are the fundamentals and the overall case for investing in publicly listed real estate this year? To what extent will REIT unit values rebound this coming year? Given the options offered by other asset classes, is real estate still considered an investment that can produce steady and favourable yields? This session will examine these and other questions in-depth including:
Stephen Sender, Managing Director, Industry Head, Real Estate, Global Investment Banking, Scotiabank
Anish Chopra, Managing Director & Portfolio Manager, TD Asset Management Inc.
Tom Dicker, Portfolio Manager, Dynamic Funds
Michael Missaghie, Senior Portfolio Manager, Sentry Investments
Michael Smith, Managing Director, Global Research, RBC Capital Markets
When liquidity and the credit markets stalled in 2009, one of the most significant casualties for the commercial and investment real estate market was the evaporation of CMBS and conduit lenders. But five years later, they are back. This session will examine the current market developments and compare them to the previous cycle. The questions to be addressed will include: who are the players now; anything different this time; do we now have a version 2.0 or a continuation of version 1.0; how did the $24 billion of conduit generated mortgages perform over the past fifteen years; what is the significance of the conduit lenders and CMBS product in Canada at this time; and what is in store for 2014 and beyond?
Paul Scholz, Managing Director, Institutional Mortgage Capital
Randy Buckley, Vice President, Murray & Company Limited
Norm Camire, Head, Canadian CMBS, Royal Bank of Canada
Karen Gu, Senior Vice President, CMBS, DBRS Limited
Glen Malcolm, Senior Vice President, CMLS Financial
This panel will look at the trends and issues related to raising debt, credit and capital from the perspectives of REITs and private equity funds. How are they managing their balance sheets in this very competitive environment? Among the questions that will be addressed:
Ashi Mathur, Managing Director and Group-Head, Canadian Real Estate, Investment & Corporate Banking, BMO Capital Markets
Larry Froom, Chief Financial Officer, H&R REIT
Cathal O’Connor, Executive Vice President & CFO, The Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited
Karen Weaver, Executive Vice President & CFO, First Capital Realty Inc.
Brady Welch, Partner, Slate Properties
Over and above the major financial institutions, large pension funds and MICs, additional players in the Canadian lending environment also include foreign banks, private equity funds and smaller domestic lenders. This session will examine their interests and focus in the Canadian commercial mortgage market. Are they here in search of large transactions or is their focus more on properties that have financing needs in the range of $20 million or less? Why is the Canadian commercial lending market gaining interest from U.S. banks? What are the loan origination and underwriting strategies of these alternative players? What is the type and range of loans that you are offering, to whom, in which markets and for what property classes; how is risk being priced for smaller sized loans or mezzanine financing; what are your spreads, amortization periods, LTV ratios, and recourse; will properties in geographic areas outside of metropolitan centres be a tougher sell in 2014; what is the market for B and C class properties that could be out of favour with major lenders; and is there any interest in underperforming assets.
Carmin Di Fiore
Jeff Cox, Vice President, Murray & Company Limited
Scott Coates, Managing Director, Mortgage Investments, KingSett Capital
Carmin Di Fiore, Senior Vice President, Commercial Real Estate Banking, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Given the inflow of billions of dollars looking for opportunities to access the yield and cash flow produced by property assets, commercial mortgages and real estate funds have been very popular products for institutional and retail investors. As a result, large pools of funds have been raised by private sources to provide a range of loans. Mezzanine financing, private mortgages and other secondary sources of capital are playing an important role in today’s real estate market. This session will examine the trends, availability, and cost of this type of credit and capital. Who is filling the strategic gap for investors seeking exposure to real estate? What is the range of options? What are their exit strategies? What is the strongest market for these types of alternative products? How can you differentiate one fund from another? What are the underlying strategies that the sources of capital are using with respect to risk/reward/return for the deployment of these funds? What will be their priorities for 2013 by product type and market across the country? How have fund managers accessed the capital markets to participate in their activities?
Reiner Plessl, Managing Director, RBC Capital Markets Real Estate Group
Michael Carragher, Vice President, Mortgage Investments, Firm Capital Corporation
Blake Cassidy, Managing Partner, Romspen Investment Corporation
Andrew Jones, Managing Director, Debt Investments/Financing, Timbercreek Asset Management Ltd.
Michael Nisker, President & CEO, Trez Capital Mortgage Investment Corporation
One of the ongoing debates for the past four years is the extent to which the sales and prices in the Greater Toronto housing market have peaked and how much of a correction in property values can we expect. The media has increasingly focused on this topic that even dominates water cooler conversations. To what degree have condominium developers overextended themselves with too many projects? Have investors stopped buying? Are lenders approaching high levels of caution and risk assessment as they respond to the concerns of the federal government by significantly reducing construction lending activities? This session will try to offer some insights on these and other questions to clarify what may lie ahead for the financing of condominium projects for 2014 and beyond. What are lenders’ pre-sale and covenant requirements and where will they be heading in the next twelve months? How are lenders and investors pricing risk for this type of financing? What underwriting practices are they using to evaluate potential projects? What are the challenges in financing mixed-use developments that include a residential component vs. single asset buildings?
Hayden Solomons, Partner, Real Estate Group, Aird & Berlis LLP
Paul Chin, Vice President, Ontario and Western Canada Real Estate Lending, Loan Syndications and Capital Markets, Otéra Capital
Bruno Iacovetta, Managing Director, Real Estate Finance Group, MCAP Financial Corporation
Frank Margani, Executive Vice President, Strategy & Development, Fortress Real Developments Inc.
Stelio Zupancich, Vice President, Real Estate, TD Commercial Banking
The growth of the unsecured debt capital has become an interesting dimension in the Canadian market. This session will examine all aspects of this portion of the mortgage market. Why is this growing? What are the issuers and sources? What is the cost differential of secured vs. unsecured debt capital? Where is it likely to be heading over the course of 2014? As some Canadian REITs are achieving investment grade status, they are able to tap the unsecured market and have a choice of what capital structure is the best for their investments. How should companies evaluate and create appropriate strategies on how and when to use this product? What is the thought process? To what extent does the buyside need to be educated about this form of debt? Many of the unsecured issuers and buyers have not been through a downturn in Canada. How high would interest rates and the cost of capital need to rise in order to create an issue for this market?
Amber Choudhry, Managing Director, Debt Capital Markets, CIBC World Markets Inc.
Brad Cutsey, Managing Director, Real Estate Investment Banking, Dundee Capital Markets
Rags Davloor, Executive Vice President and CFO, RioCan REIT
Merrie Frankel, Vice President, Senior Credit Officer, Moody’s Investors Service
Charles Neirick, Founding Managing Partner, PropCap
An insightful discussion about investment activity in today’s very competitive market environment that is on the cusp of rising interest rates. The past year saw another significant amount of transactions as many organizations’ acquisition war chests continued to overflow with cash combined with a strong search for yield by investors leaving the bond market. But a sudden rise in bond yields in mid-2013 resulted in double-digit declines in REIT unit values and virtually shut down access to the capital markets for their needs. The panel will address a range of questions including: What will likely be the major challenges in order to buy or sell assets in this market? What are the differences between the issues faced by a REIT vs. a pension fund vs. a private equity fund in selling or acquiring properties at this time? To what extent have pension and private equity funds filled the void created by the REITs moving to the sidelines? How are you able to finance your development and investment programs going forward? Where will cap rates be by the end of 2014 relative to today’s prices? Who do you anticipate will be the likely sellers? Which property classes will be most favoured? How will rising interest rates affect your strategies?
Peter Senst, President, Canadian Capital Markets, CBRE Limited
Peter Aghar, President, Crux Capital Corporation
Jonathan Gitlin, Senior Vice President, Investments, RioCan REIT
Blair McCreadie, Head, Canadian Real Estate, Standard Life Investments (Real Estate) Inc.
Paul Zemla, Chief Investment Officer, Bentall Kennedy (Canada) LP
An insightful discussion with a diversified group of senior real estate executives and investment managers on their perspective for Canadian real estate fundamentals, trends, opportunities, and strategies for 2014. How will Canada perform relative to the U.S., European and other global markets? What will likely be the key challenges facing real estate executives over the next twelve months looking for sources of well-priced capital? What are their expectations of the capital and credit markets in supporting the growth of their portfolios? What trend do they expect for the cost of debt capital? What impact will this have on cap rates and real estate values? What are you seeing in capital, financial and real estate markets outside of Canada, especially in the U.S. and Europe? How much deal flow can be expected in the Canadian market in 2014? Are assets now priced beyond perfection in Canada? Have we reached the point where investing outside of the country is far more attractive than staying at home? Do you anticipate sufficient buying opportunities for your organization or will you pursue some development activity to generate more growth? What will be the appetite of retail and institutional investors to have greater real estate exposure in their portfolios?
Mark Johnson, Managing Director and Group Co-Head, Canadian Real Estate Investment Banking,CIBC World Markets Inc.
Peter Sweeney, Vice President and CFO, Allied Properties REIT
Michael Cooper, President & CEO, DREAM Unlimited Corp.
Bill Jandrisits, President & CEO, MCAN Mortgage Corporation
Blake Hutcheson, President & CEO, Oxford Properties Group Inc.
Kelly Marshall, Managing Partner, Brookfield Asset Management
Dennis Mitchell, Executive Vice President & CIO, Sentry Investments