Recorded at the RealCapital Conference in February 2020, Lesley Gibson sits down with Aaron and Adam in this episode. She is the Co-Chair of the conference and Chief Financial Officer of CT REIT, which owns a Canada-wide portfolio of assets leased primarily to Canadian Tire.
Lesley talks about the strong connection between CT REIT and Canadian Tire that allows both entities to reap many benefits. We hear about the triple-net approach of CT REIT, the company’s growth strategy, and smaller markets that Canadian Tire has found great success in.
Topics covered include:
- Lesley’s experience in international markets before working with CT REIT.
- Experiencing a hostile takeover with Primaris REIT.
- What role Lesley played in the merger of Choice Properties and CREIT.
- The broad mandate of CT REIT and Lesley’s view on expansion.
- An explanation of triple-net REITs.
- The increasing competitiveness of CT REIT’s cost of capital.
- How the core mandate has been growth at CT REIT since its inception.
- The working relationship between Canadian Tire and CT REIT.
- Investments that Canadian Tire has made in online shopping.
- Why secondary markets are an important part of Canadian Tire’s retail chain.
- Using unsecured debt to get to a certain level of liquidity.
- Bright spots that Lesley has seen during the conference on the day of recording.
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This episode of Commercial Real Estate Podcast powered by First National was recorded live at the RealCapital Conference in February 2020 as part of our Forum Series.
More about our guest:
Lesley Gibson is the Chief Financial Officer of CT REIT and has 25 years of real estate and finance experience. Prior to her appointment as Chief Financial Officer, Lesley held a variety of increasingly senior positions at Choice Properties Real Estate Investment Trust, where she was most recently Chief Accounting Officer, and at Primaris Real Estate Investment Trust, where she was promoted to Executive Vice President, Finance.
Lesley was also Vice President, Corporate Reporting at Oxford Properties Group and spent the first portion of her career working for KPMG in Toronto and London, U.K. Lesley is a member of the ICSC Foundation Canada Board of Directors.