Crestpoint Real Estate Investments Ltd. doubled the size of its portfolio in 2013 to about $600-million, scooping up three office buildings, a retail plaza and an industrial site towards the end of the year.
The commercial real estate manager was created a little more than three years ago as part of Connor, Clark & Lunn Financial Group. It was founded by Kevin Leon, who had been a managing director in the real estate investment banking group at CIBC, where he worked for roughly a decade following several years at CB Richard Ellis Ltd.
Crestpoint's main business is an open-ended core-plus account for high net worth individuals who are clients of Connor, Clark & Lunn and small institutional clients. It made its first acquisition in March of 2011, and has lately ramped up the pace of its purchases.
"In 2013 we bought more than $300-million worth of assets," Mr. Leon says. The vast majority of those acquisitions came in the latter part of the year, when Crestpoint bought the Steeles Technology Campus, the Robertson Building and Titan Plaza in Toronto, as well as an industrial complex on Brunswick Blvd in Montreal and the London Building in Vancouver.
The Steeles Tech deal was done with two partners and is not part of the open-ended fund. Mr. Leon notes that the 45-acre site includes 20 acres of land on the site that can still be developed or built on.
The fund, meanwhile, has targeted returns of 8 to 10 per cent. "In the last few years we've been able to basically double those returns; that's a combination of capital appreciation and income returns," Mr. Leon says. "I think going forward it's going to be a little more difficult to hit those kinds of hurdle rates, but we're very comfortable with our target returns."