Washington Real Estate Investment Trust (WRE)

Q2 2010 Earnings Call

July 30, 2010 11:00 am ET

Executives

Kelly Shiflett - Director of Finance

Skip McKenzie - President and CEO

Bill Camp - EVP and CFO

Laura Franklin - EVP and Chief Accounting and Administrative Officer

Mike Paukstitus - SVP, Real Estate

Analysts

Brendan Maiorana - Wells Fargo

Mitchell Germain - JMP Asset Management

Sarah King - JP Morgan

Chris Lucas - Robert W. Baird

Presentation

Operator

Welcome to the Washington Real Estate Investment Trust Second Quarter 2010 Earnings Call. As a reminder, today's call is being recorded. Before turning over the call to the Company's President and Chief Executive Officer, Skip McKenzie, Kelly Shiflett, Director of Finance, who will provide some introductory information. Ms. Shiflett, please go ahead.

Kelly Shiflett

Thank you and good morning, everyone. After the market closed yesterday, we issued our earnings press release. If there is anyone on the call who would like a copy of the release, please contact me at 301-984-9400 or you may access the document from our website at www.writ.com. Our second quarter financial supplemental information is also available on our website.

Our conference call today will contain financial measures such as FFO and NOI that are non-GAAP measures, and in accordance with Reg G, we have provided a reconciliation to those measures in our supplementals. The per-share information being discussed on today's call is reported on a fully diluted share basis.

Please bear in mind that certain statements during this call are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially.

Such risks, uncertainties, and other factors include, but are not limited to, the effect of the recent credit and financial market conditions; the availability and cost of capital; fluctuations in interest rates, tenant financial conditions, the timing and pricing of lease transactions, levels of competition, the effect of government regulation, the impact of newly adopted accounting principles, changes in general and local economic and real estate market conditions and other risks and uncertainties detailed from time to time in our filings with the SEC, including our 2009 Form 10-K.

We assume no obligation to update or supplement forward-looking statements that become untrue because of subsequent events. Participating in today's call with me will be Skip McKenzie, President and Chief Executive Officer; Bill Camp, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Laura Franklin, Executive Vice President and Chief Accounting and Administrative Officer; and Mike Paukstitus, Senior Vice President, Real Estate. Now, I'd like to turn the call over to Skip.

Skip McKenzie

Thanks, Kelly. Good morning and thank you for joining the Washington Real Estate Investment Trust earnings conference call this morning.

Since we last reported economic recovery in the Washington region has continued on a slow, steady, and upper trajectory. While some market pundits have forecasted a more robust recovery, our experience suggest this recovery phase is not atypical and we anticipate leasing activity and rental rate stabilization will become more pronounced in 2011 and beyond.

Regionally, the US government leasing in large blocks have dominated the early endings of this game, but as vacancies are reduced and the private sector's confidence, and as a result the participation increases, this recovery will become more broad based, and leasing velocities will accelerate to the more normal levels we have enjoyed in the past.

We have already seen a dramatic improvement in the investment sales markets. As cap rate have compressed to near pre-crisis levels, property owners are again listing assets for sale, and I believe that this trend will continue and increase for the balance of the year and into 2011.

We were very pleased to be active this quarter with both acquisitions and dispositions. On June 10, WRIT purchased two buildings in Quantico Corporate Center for $68 million at a very attractive 8.8% cash yield within A++ Tenant Roster. This Class A office acquisition is strategically poised to capitalize on existing DoD demand at the Quantico Marine Base as well as the new 719,000 square feet BRAC facility that is expected to open in 2011. We are optimistic that we will be increasing our investment in the part over the next several years as BRAC needs and the military demand increases in Quantico.

On the disposition side, we sold three office properties and one industrial property in Rockville, Maryland for $23.4 million. These assets have been in the REIT portfolio for quite a while. Three of them for 17 years and one for 11 years and the disposition is consistent with our stated strategy of recycling slower growth assets and repositioning investments in to locations with better growth potential, and revenues and asset valuation.

Operationally, same-store results were generally flat compared to last quarter, but leasing activity was up across all sectors, which Mike will discuss further in a few minutes. We accomplished several key strategic leasing achievements this quarter. A 46,000 square foot lease for the pending LaFarge vacancy in Herndon, Virginia, as well as the renewal of our largest industrial tenant, a 129,000 square feet, FDI lease in our Pickett Industrial Park in Alexandria at an attractive rental rate increase.

We have seen a pronounced reduction in credit loss this quarter, which we believe is emblematic of the early stages of an economic recovery.

Now, I would like to turn the call over to Bill Camp who will discuss our financial results and capital market activities and then Mike will discuss our real estate operations.

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