July 11, 2014 - Bostonia Partners’ President, Anita Molino, Invited to Participate in a Federal Roundtable Policy Discussion on GSA Leasing.
The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management recently hosted a roundtable to discuss how to take advantage of the perfect storm of conditions surrounding the backlog in GSA Leasing Program. The roundtable was scheduled by Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Lou Barletta, R.-PA and included GSA Public Buildings Commissioner, Norman Dong, as well as private sector panelists: Anita Molino of Bostonia Partners, Lynn deCastro of Prudential Real Estate Investors, and Amy B. Rifkind of Partner at Arnold & Porter LLP.
The roundtable was organized to address the GSA’s large backlog of expired leases and millions of feet of upcoming lease expirations. Approximately half of the GSA’s 98 million square feet of leased space is due to expire in the next five years, yet the GSA’s current approach has resulted in short term lease renewals and an increased number of leases going into holdover. The uncertain future of the GSA leases has made it more difficult and more expensive for government landlords to secure financing for the leased space. Such conditions work to neither party’s favor, as the more expensive financing forces the landlord to charge a premium for lease renewals and holdovers, and the landlord is unable to offer any lease concessions and building improvements to the government. Meanwhile, vacancy rates remain elevated in D.C. and across the country, interest rates are still low, and significant amount of GSA leased space is scheduled to expire in the next five years.
The roundtable panelists highlighted that the GSA now has the ability to save millions of dollars by starting the lease evaluation process earlier and creating more competition among landlords, improving the lease terms to give more comfort to investors, and signing longer term leases that are easier to finance and result in lower rental rates and greater concessions from landlords. Ms. Molino offered the perspective of financing GSA leases, noting that longer leases aid landlords in the financing process and help reduce the overall cost of real estate for the federal government. “The current backlog in GSA leases will benefit from a teamwork approach among the public and private sectors, and our discussion today signifies the collective interest in finding a solution that meets the goals of all parties involved,” said Ms. Molino. Ms. Molino has over 30 years of experience as an investment banker and finance professional. Bostonia Partners, under the leadership of Ms. Molino, has financed over $3 billion for Landlords with GSA tenants. Video coverage of the House Roundtable Discussion is available here.
About Bostonia Group
Bostonia Group is an investment bank headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, consisting of the following companies: Bostonia Partners, which provides investment banking services to its corporate, municipal and federal clients and Bostonia Global Securities, the broker-dealer, which offers equity and fixed income products and services to institutional investors. In total, Bostonia has originated and placed over $10 billion of financings in the real estate, contract finance, and energy sectors. Bostonia Global Securities is a member of FINRA and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board. Bostonia has provided financing for some of the largest real estate federal government real estate projects, including $258 million for the NOAA Headquarters at Silver Spring Metro Center, $131 million for the NIAID Headquarters, a confidential amount for the Dulles Discovery Campus, and $340 million for the Army Lodging Fund and Hospitality Cash Management Fund. Most recently, Bostonia provided financial advisory and placement services for the National Science Foundation headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia. In addition, Bostonia has financed over $2 billion in federal, municipal and commercial energy efficiency, distributed generation and renewable energy projects. Bostonia financed the largest solar PV system operating on U.S. Army land for which Bostonia serves as the solar asset owner. Further information on Bostonia and the firm’s transactions is available at www.bostonia.com.