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REIT Watch: Willett Preparing for REIT’s IPO


**Willett Companies and WK Nowlan Hope to Raise €300 Million in REIT IPO** Monday August 19th: Willett Companies, an American investment company, and WK Nowlan, an Irish property management and advisory firm, are planning to float a €300 million (₤255.5 million) real estate investment trust in Dublin and London. The listing is expected to take place in mid-to-late October.

The REIT’s board has been filled up with a number of high-profile individuals including Colm Barrington, the aviation finance entrepreneur and former Aer Lingus chairman, and Terence O’Rourke, ex-managing partner of KPMG. Danny Kitchen, the former finance director of Green Property, will be acting as non-executive chairman ahead of the floatation. Steward Harrington, one of the founding partners of Harrington Bannon Chartered Surveyors, is also understood to have been lined up as a non-executive

The explains that it’s vital for Willett and WK Nowlan to secure a high-quality board as many investors require both strong management and boards to identify the best deals to put their money in.
Willett and WK Nowlan are hoping to repeat the success of Green REIT, which has risen 18 percent since its floatation in the middle of last month (Ireland’s First REIT Raises €310m in Share Placing). The companies have hired Goodbody Stockbrokers to advise them on the floatation and are also thought to be close to appointing international advisers.

It has been speculated that Kennedy Wilson, a U.S. fund which has led the purchase of more than €500 million (₤426 million) of Irish property, could also launch a real estate investment trust. Kennedy Wilson’s executive vice-president Matt Windisch told analysts in August that he was “well aware” of the success of Green REIT and his company was considering “any and all strategic options” to maximise shareholder value.

**US & North America**
**QTS Realty Trust Eyes $300 Million Floatation**
QTS Realty Trust, an owner and operator of data centres used by government agencies and businesses, is planning to raise $300 million (₤192 million) in an initial public offering.
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The company has not disclosed how many shares it will offer and at what price but said it planned to operate as a real estate investment trust.
QTS Realty Trust has a portfolio of 10 data centres across seven states and will be the second data-centre REIT to carry out an IPO in the U.S. this year. CyrusOne raised about $361 million (₤231 million) in January but has seen its share price drop by about 14 percent since then.
QTS Realty Trust reported about $7.1 million (₤4.5 million) of net income for the first half of the year on revenue of $84.4 million (₤53.9 million). The REIT plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol QTS. Goldman Sachs and Jefferies Group will be leading the offering.

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