Forest City Enterprises, Inc. (FCE.A)

Q2 2012 Earnings Results Conference

September 5, 2012 11:00 AM ET


David J. LaRue - President and CEO

Robert G. O’Brien - CFO

Matthew L. Messinger - EVP, Investment Management

MaryAnne Gilmartin - EVP, Commercial and Residential Development

Michael Lonsway - SVP, Capital Markets


Richard Moore - RBC Capital Markets



Welcome to the Forest City Enterprises’ Second Quarter 2012 Earnings Conference Call. The Company would like to remind you that today’s remarks include forward-looking comments that are covered under the Federal Safe Harbor provisions. Actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements due to various risks, uncertainties and other factors.

Please refer to the risk factors outlined in Forest City’s annual and quarterly reports filed with the SEC for discussion of factors that could cause results to differ. This call is being recorded and a replay will be available beginning at 2.00 pm Eastern Time today. Both the telephone replay and the webcast will be available until October 05, 2012, at 11.59 pm Eastern Time.

The Company would like to remind listeners that it will be using non-GAAP terminology, such as operating FFO, FFO, comparable property net operation income and pro rata share in its discussions today. Please refer to Forest City supplemental package for an explanation of these terms and why the company uses them, as well as reconciliations to their comparable financial measures in accordance with General Accepted Accounting Principles.

Also please note that exhibits referred to during today’s call are available on the Investor Relations page at the Company’s website At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. Participants on the call will have the opportunity to ask questions following the Company’s prepared comments.

I’d now like to turn the call over to Forest City’s President and CEO, David LaRue. Please go ahead, Mr. LaRue.

David J. LaRue

Thank you, operator. Good morning, everyone and thank you for joining us today. We are originating our call today from Chicago where we’re attending the BMO Capital Markets North American Real Estate Conference.

With me today is Bob O’Brien, our Chief Financial Officer; MaryAnne Gilmartin, Executive Vice President of Commercial and Residential Development; and Matt Messinger, Executive Vice President of Investment Management at our New York office are also on the line from Brooklyn and will be available to answer questions during the Q&A. Michael Lonsway, our Senior Vice President of Capital Markets is also here with us in Chicago.

Our second quarter results went out yesterday after the close of the market. By now I hope all of you’ve had a chance to review them. As part of our continued efforts to improve our investor outreach, we’re taking somewhat of a different approach beginning with today’s call. We will spend less time talking through the numbers for the quarter and six months, all of which can be found in our press release and filings and more time on our strategic initiatives, our portfolio and how we feel about the business today and going forward.

In a few minutes I will turn the call over to Bob for his comments and our results, after that I will give an update on our pipeline and after some closing thoughts then we will get to your questions.

I will begin with some overall comments on the quarter. As you saw in our press release, we’re pleased with our operating portfolio performed during the second quarter. We had comp NOI increased across all of our major products, apartments, retail and office and our multi-family portfolio registered a fourth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth in comp NOI.

We also had strong occupancy – comp occupancy in each of these major product types. Our headline FFO as well as our earning results were down compared with the same period last year, primarily as a result of additional land impairment, which I will discuss in a moment and write-offs of abandoned development projects. Operating FFO, which is a new non-GAAP measure we’re introducing this quarter, was up marginally in the second quarter. For the six months its up 5.8% compared to the first half of last year.

I will have more to say about operating FFO in a moment and Bob will provide more color on the second quarter and year-to-date results in a few minutes.

Let me update you on the strategic decision we’ve announced beginning – at the beginning of the year regarding repositioning of our land business. We’ve already completed the number of sales including a 2000 acre project, in Prosper, Texas. At the end of the second quarter we had 48.8 million of land at cost on our pro rata balance sheet. We now have contracts or letters of intent on more than 80% of that land and we expect to close these deals by the end of the year.

Marketing efforts are continuing on the remaining projects. Overall, we’re very pleased with this progress and I want to thank our team that is working hard to execute the strategy. As you know when we announced our decision at year-end, we took a significant impairment on our land holdings. During the second quarter we took an additional impairment which needs to be addressed.

With the year-end impairment, we made assumptions about the current value of approximately 30 projects we intended to sell. As we’ve gone to market in most cases our assumptions have proven to be quite good and price in – price in generally as a matter of expectations. That being said, the overall housing market continues to be weak and as we move first this strategy, there were two primary areas where pricing has not met our initial expectations due to this changing market.

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