Find new opportunities with American Ventures Partners, a leader in real estate investment since 1992
Philip Blumberg, founder of American Ventures Realty Advisers and Blumberg Capital, formed his first real estate company in 1983 shortly after graduating from Harvard Business School. At its outset, American Ventures primarily developed, leased, and managed office and residential properties in southern Florida. It quickly became one of Florida’s largest leasing and property-management firms.
American Ventures Realty gradually expanded into other areas, including advisory services to help property owners and investors maximize the value of their real estate assets. Clients included Knight Ridder, then the country’s second-largest newspaper chain; AvMed, a healthcare benefits provider; and Kumagai Gumi, a Japanese construction company.
IDENTIFYING ALL OF THE FACTORS THAT AFFECT VALUATION
Early on, Mr. Blumberg recognized that individual properties don’t operate in vacuums. Rather, values are driven by a host of internal and external factors, including the regional business environment and shifts in the capital markets. As a result, Mr. Blumberg’s team researched and monitored real-time changes in both real estate and capital availability. To formalize that competency, he founded RealData Information Systems, which published in-depth research reports on commercial real estate, pulling in top institutional investors and investment banks as subscribers.
American Ventures Property Fund
In 1992, Mr. Blumberg launched his first investment fund, the American Ventures Property Fund. Investors included large pension funds, institutional investors, banks and foundations. As an Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) fiduciary, the property fund and other funds to follow operated under the SEC’s most stringent investment rules and regulations.
Mr. Blumberg leveraged his hybrid expertise in commercial real estate, property development, macroeconomics and the capital markets to amass a portfolio of Class “A” office properties in the country’s Sun Belt -- stretching from the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida to Louisiana, Alabama, Texas, Arizona, Nevada and southern California.
When the American Ventures Property Fund closed in 2000, it ranked as the country’s top real estate fund by both Pensions & Investments and The National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries – posting an average annual investor return of 22.5%, net of fees and costs, over eight years.
Mr. Blumberg has a long and successful track record in raising investment capital and putting investor funds to work. American Ventures Realty Advisors has operated fully discretionary open- and closed-end funds, as well as REITs, generating an average annual return of 17.9% from 1992-2008, while never losing investor capital.
The Birth of AVP’s Investment Strategy
With the dawn of a new millennium, Mr. Blumberg was among the first to see signs of a looming economic recession, which hit in 2001 when the tech bubble burst. To capitalize on a new market trough in commercial real estate, he launched a new fund, The Blumberg Property Fund, to pursue office properties coming on the market at significant discounts.
American Ventures’ success, in part, relies on its vertical integration of operations and management, as well as an unwavering focus on tenant services, which has translated into the industry’s highest renewal rates. Controlling all aspects of property management and tenant experiences creates stronger-performing real estate assets – and has fueled American Ventures’ consistent cash flow and profitability.
READING THE SIGNS AND TAKING ACTION... AGAIN AND AGAIN
Like the tech bubble six years before, Mr. Blumberg foresaw the 2007 tightening of liquidity –due to unrealistic valuations of mortgage-based securities on bank balance sheets. Coupled with unprecedented levels of capital flowing into real estate, it drove office-building valuations well above sustainable levels. As more funds flowed into U.S. real estate, Mr. Blumberg did the opposite, liquidating his entire portfolio of commercial properties at record-high market prices before most recognized the dire situation.
In 2010, Mr. Blumberg launched a third real estate fund, securing commitments from investors around the world. However, unfavorable securitized capital structures and lingering illiquidity tamped down the number of commercial properties expected to come on the market . Mr. Blumberg identified the risk prior to deploying any capital and decided to suspend the fund and return investor capital.
With the U.S. CMBS markets still frozen, Mr. Blumberg formed The American Ventures Commodities Fund to invest in and develop 3.5 million-square-feet of global logistics and supply-chain facilities. The fund invested in the construction and deployment of technologically sophisticated grain-storage facilities to help farmers store and protect annual harvests in regions where vast amounts of perishable fruits, vegetables and grain are lost to rot as they await market sale. The Fund secured construction contracts from a host of countries – including large deals with the Egyptian and Nigerian governments.
A Trusted Advisor
Mr. Blumberg has served as a director of the WAGES Coalition, President Bill Clinton’s welfare-reform board; chairman of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce; board member of Miami’s Downtown Development Authority; chairman-elect of the Florida Chamber of Commerce; and a member of the University of Miami’s Board of Trustees. Since 2012, he’s been on the Board of Visitors for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill since 2012.
In 2001, he was nominated by former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Peter Pace to serve on the Joint Civilian Orientation Conference – and appointed to the post by the Department of Defense. Mr. Blumberg has appeared frequently on CNBC and other national business broadcast outlets. He’s also a regular featured speaker on the national real estate conference circuit.
Positioned for Success Well into the Future...
In late 2019, Mr. Blumberg invited Colin P. Kane and Jordan M. Stone, founding partners of The Peregrine Group, to join his latest investment fund – The American Ventures Strategic Property Fund -- to pursue emerging opportunities in distressed commercial real estate, a trend accelerated by the Covid pandemic.
Messrs. Kane and Stone founded The Peregrine Group in 2001, a leading real estate advisory, developer, and property manager. Each executive has more than 20 years of real estate experience. Since Peregrine’s inception, they’ve overseen the acquisition, management and development of some $750 million in properties. In addition, Peregrine’s property-management unit’s client portfolio encompasses six million square-feet of commercial and residential properties, including 1,400 residential units.