Duke Realty Signs Lease with Optoro, Facility 100% Occupied

Elva Mankin

Duke Realty Corp. DRE has been witnessing solid demand for its logistic facilities in the Nashville metro area. The company recently clinched a lease deal for 207,518 square feet of space in Park 840 West 14840 in Lebanon, TN, with the returns technology company Optoro, Inc.

With the latest lease, this 653,460-square-foot logistics building, which is just off I-840 at Highway 109, has achieved full occupancy. It highlights the elevated demand for modern Class A facilities. With the property being positioned east of downtown Nashville and within minutes of I-40, I-24 and I-65, it serves as an efficient and convenient one for making distribution throughout the Southern United States as well as the rest of the nation.

Amid the e-commerce boom, the industrial real estate asset category has continued to play a key role, transforming the way how consumers shop and receive their goods. Services like same-day delivery are gaining traction, and last-mile properties in high-income urban areas have been witnessing solid pricing, occupancy and growth in rentals.

Furthermore, social-distancing needs and stay-at-home orders have particularly boosted online ordering goods. Also, apart from e-retail, companies are making moves to improve their supply-chain efficiencies, propelling demand for logistics infrastructure and efficient distribution networks.

The asset category showed resilience in the second quarter amid the coronavirus crisis on low vacancy rates, high-asking rents, positive net absorptions and robust rent collections. There has been a notable increase in e-commerce’s share of total retail sales, spurring demand for warehouse and distribution space.

Per a CBRE Group CBRE report, the average asking rents finished the mid-year at $7.96 per square feet, marking a 6.3% increase year on year. In addition, the asset category has a near-record low overall vacancy rate of 4.7%.This is boosting growth prospects for industrial REITs like Duke Realty, Prologis, Inc. PLD,Rexford Industrial Realty, Inc. REXR and Terreno Realty Corporation TRNO.

Duke Realty’s capacity to bank on this favorable trend is likely to help the company witness active leasing and healthy rent levels across its properties. In the Nashville metro area, this domestic pure play industrial REIT already enjoys ownership and management of 3.6 million square feet of industrial properties.

Nationwide, the company’s portfolio spans roughly 156 million rentable square feet of industrial assets in 20 key U.S. logistics markets. Thus, Duke Realty is well poised to benefit from the solid demand from e-commerce and traditional distribution customers for the company’s industrial properties.

Shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company have appreciated 20.2% over the past year, while its industry has declined 4.4%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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