Mack-Cali Realty's CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Mack-Cali Realty Corporation (CLI)

Q2 2012 Earnings Call

July 26, 2012 10:00 am ET

Executives

Mitchell Hersh - President and CEO

Barry Lefkowitz - EVP and CFO

Analyst

Jamie Feldman - Bank of America

Michael Knott - Green Street Advisors

Craig Mailman - KeyBanc Capital Markets

James Sullivan - Cowen and Company

Steve Sakwa - ISI Group

Josh Attie - Citi

Presentation

Operator

Good day everyone and welcome to the Mack-Cali Realty Corporation second quarter 2012 conference call. At this time, I'd like to turn the conference over to the President and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Mitchell Hersh.

Mitchell Hersh

Good morning, everyone, and thank you for joining Mack-Cali's second quarter 2012 earnings conference call. With me today is Barry Lefkowitz, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

On a legal note, I must remind everyone that certain information discussed on this call may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Federal Securities Law. Although we believe the estimates reflected in these statements are based on reasonable assumptions, we cannot give assurance that the anticipated results will be achieved. We refer you to our press release and annual and quarterly reports filed with the SEC for risk factors that could impact the company.

First, I'd like to review some of our results and activities for the quarter and generally what we're seeing in our markets, and then Barry will review our financial results. FFO for the second quarter 2012 was $0.62 per diluted share.

As you'll note from our press release, we did have solid leasing activity, totaling almost 940,000 square feet of lease transactions during the quarter. And that figure included 338,000 square feet of new leases. Our tenant retention was 58.1% of outgoing space, reflecting a continued trend of downsizing and adjustments in businesses that are throughout all of the sectors that we enjoy within our portfolio.

We ended the quarter at 87.6% leased, very slightly down from last quarter's 87.9%. Rent on renewals rolled down this quarter by 3.1% on a cash basis compared to last quarter's 3.7% cash roll down, reflecting the fact that I do believe we're sort of at the bottom of the trough. And now it's just a question of how long it will take to accelerate and increase demand in the service-based economy and add employment.

Remaining lease rollovers for 2012 are just 4.1% of base rent or slightly less than $26 million. Our leasing cost for the quarter were $3.10 per square foot per year, down from last quarter's $3.85 per square foot per year. Again, at the risk of redundancy reflecting the fact that I do believe we are in a trough right now and sort of at the bottom.

Despite a challenging environment, the statistics bear out the fact that our portfolio continues to outperform virtually every market in which we operate. Our lease grades exceed market averages in Northern and Central New Jersey, Westchester, Suburban Philadelphia and even Washington D.C.

Looking at some of the activities during the quarter, as previously announced just a short time ago, we entered into a ground lease with probably one of the most coveted retail tenants, doing business at least in the North East, Wegmans Food Markets. This ground lease will be at a sight that's undeveloped in Hanover Township, New Jersey, Morris County, located at Sylvan Way and Ridgedale Avenue.

Wegmans plans to construct an approximate 140,000 square foot store on a finished pad that we will be delivering. And certainly, this is not only a great opportunity to put our strategically located land bank to use in a very diverse manner. But I can't tell you about how many communications I have received, excited about the fact that Wegmans will be a very welcome addition to the community and to the county. As well as Wegmans will have probably 35,000 or 40,000 square feet of ancillary retail on the balance of that sight. All will be in the form of ground lease structures as currently anticipated.

And now turning to some of the leasing during the quarter, several of the notable transactions that we've outlined in our quarterly filings include the following. As we previously announced, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, BTMU, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, signed a 100,000 square foot expansion at Harborside Financial Center Plaza 3, along New Jersey City waterfront.

This expansion now brings the banks presence at the waterfront in Harborside to approximately 262,000 square feet on a long-term commitment. The building, Plaza 3, as we refer to it is about 726,000 square feet and it's 97.3% leased with this expansion.

MD On-Line, a provider of electronic data interchange solutions, signed a new lease for 33,000, at 6 Century Drive at our Mack-Cali Business Campus in Parsippany. Relocating and expanding around slightly less than 10,000 square feet at another one of our properties in the Campus, reflecting the fact that certain segments of the economy are expanding, certainly in the technology and electronic data type solutions.

And we were witnessed to and are participant in a rapid expansion. And given our presence in that sub-market and at the Business Campus, we were able to easily and seamlessly accommodate a tenant's rapid expansion, which is part of the philosophy of our company to have deep presence in markets and deep relationships with our tenants, so that when they expand or contrary when they need to contract to deal with business conditions, we're there as their partner.

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