Duke Realty CEO Jim Connor Spoke at REITWeek 2017

As part of REITWeek 2017, our Chairman and CEO Jim Connor sat down with Matthew Bechard from REIT.com to discuss Duke Realty’s strategy after the sale of its medical office building assets to Healthcare Trust of America Inc. for $2.8 billion.

“We had built the business…to a size where we had enough critical mass to sell for a premium,” Connor said. “And there were opportunities to sell the operating business, so it wasn’t just an asset sale.”

Connor went on to explain that Duke Realty plans to use some of the proceeds for development and acquisitions, return some to shareholders, and deleverage and improve the balance sheet.

He also emphasized that proceeds need to be allocated with discipline. “We’re continuing to focus on newer, class-A buildings in high-barrier, tier-one markets,” Connor said.

Connor also touched on industrial development trends and the increasing demand for faster delivery speed in this sector. He believes Duke Realty is well positioned to thrive in this market, and noted that the company has already started taking on many infill development projects with tenants including UPS, Amazon, and FedEx.

See the full interview here.