This year’s AREIT team of Jonathan Brown, Anthony Huerta, Ethan Schwenker, Kyle Van Someren and Michael Zoellner did a terrific job throughout the academic school year and their second (and last) year as Real Estate MBA students. They achieved a 9.68% return over a seven month investment period, just underperforming their benchmark by 7 basis points and leaving the department with an endowment of $1,350,124.
This was a team of stock-pickers, meaning that they focused closely on firm asset fundamentals and management quality, while keeping their property type sector allocations neutral in view of their neutral view of the overall economy. This approach worked well for them, as they impressed our all-star advisory board with their knowledge of the companies and the property type sectors they covered. The team was also particularly impressive set of presenters at the board meetings, and they did much over the year to formalize company and portfolio management evaluation processes.
Once again we are incredibly grateful to the AREIT advisory board of directors: Joe Betlej, Michael Casey, Lee Christensen, Randy Eggert, Stephanie Kelly, Reginald Pfeifer, Tim Pire, Matt Richmond, Seth Singerman, Ken Statz, and David Toti. Their loyalty and leadership helps make AREIT a singular educational experience for our students. I know for a fact that the AREIT student team benefitted immensely from their interactions with board members throughout the year.
Finally, we owe many thanks to Michael Brennan, executive director of the Graaskamp Center, who co-taught the course with me this year. His thoughtful appraisals of company pitches made by the students, the time spent with the team in preparation for the board meetings, and his mentoring of the students has truly elevated the quality of the program.
Finally, I would like to introduce and welcome the four new members of the AREIT team, class of 2015. They are Gio Callejas, Aaron Herrmann, Jay Usner and Zachary Zanolli. They look to be a terrific group, and Mike and I are looking forward to working with them in the coming year.