NEW YORK–MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET) announced today that it originated, through its real estate investment group, approximately $14.3 billion globally in commercial real estate loans in 2015, an 18 percent increase over the $12.1 billion originated in the previous year. MetLife is one of the largest commercial mortgage lenders among life insurers.
MetLife also committed to invest approximately $1 billion in real estate equity in 2015, either through direct acquisition or as part of joint venture partnerships.
Within its international portfolio, MetLife expanded its lending activities in 2015, originating commercial real estate loans of more than $1.6 billion in the United Kingdom and more than $200 million in Mexico. MetLife also lent the following amounts in its local currency accounts: more than 1.2 billion Mexico pesos; approximately 45 billion Japanese yen; approximately 400 million Australian dollars; 20 billion South Korean won; and more than 4 million Chilean Unidad de Fomento (UF).
Real estate investments are an important part of MetLife’s asset-liability matching program. The long-term nature of these investments makes them a good match for the long-term liabilities the company writes.
MetLife’s institutional asset management business, MetLife Investment Management (MIM), also had a strong year. Celebrating its third year in operation in 2015, MIM originated approximately $1.1 billion in commercial mortgage loans for institutional clients.
“MetLife continued to be a major investor in real estate in 2015, focusing on a number of key sectors, including commercial mortgages, real estate equity, and investments on behalf of our institutional clients,” said Robert Merck, senior managing director and global head of real estate investments for MetLife. “Following our strategy of investing in major markets with strong fundamentals, MetLife strengthened its position as a leader in commercial mortgage lending both domestically and internationally. We also continued to create attractive opportunities for institutional investors through MetLife Investment Management, and we believe that 2016 will bring more success in asset management.”
MetLife’s real estate platform includes origination and asset management offices across eleven regional offices in the United States, London, Mexico City, Tokyo and Santiago, Chile.
Strong Commercial Mortgage Lending
MetLife originated a number of commercial real estate loan transactions of $150 million and above in 2015, including the following:
- $505 million first mortgage on the Loews Universal Orlando Hotel Portfolio, collateralized by three AAA four diamond resorts in Orlando, Fla.
- $400 million first mortgage on Columbia Center, a Class A office tower in Seattle, Wash.
- Lead lender and $333 million participation in a $1 billion mortgage loan on Mall at Short Hills, a super-regional mall in Short Hills, N.J.
- $276 million first mortgage on Oak Park Mall, a leading upscale regional mall in Overland Park, Kan.
- $261 million investment in a $691 million term loan facility secured by a pool of loans in the United Kingdom
- $255 million first leasehold mortgage on 1675 Broadway, a Class A office building in New York, N.Y.
- $228 million first mortgage on 123/151 Buckingham Palace Road, two office properties located in London’s West End
- $215 million participation in a $430 million first mortgage on Park Place, an office and retail campus in Irvine, Calif.
- $210 million first mortgage on Towers at Williams Square, four Class A+ office buildings in Irving, Texas
- $175 million first mortgage on Eastown Apartments, a Class A mid-rise apartment community in Hollywood, Calif.
Equity Real Estate Investments
“MetLife and its partners had a strong year adding high-quality assets to our real estate portfolio in a variety of markets,” Merck added. “We believe that the market in 2016 will offer ample opportunities for equity deals for institutional investors.”
MetLife’s five largest equity real estate transactions in 2015 were:
- Park Tower, a 737,000 square foot office development in San Francisco, Calif., for $340 million
- Shinjuku 3-chrome Building, a 67,000 square foot retail property in Tokyo, Japan, for $170 million
- Park District/2101 Pearl, a 815,500 square foot mixed-use development in Dallas, Texas, for $98 million
- Osaka Marubeni Building, a 245,000 square foot office property in Osaka, Japan, for $88 million
- Vu New River, a 209-unit apartment development in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., for $52.5 million
About MetLife, Inc.
MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET), through its subsidiaries and affiliates (“MetLife”), is one of the largest life insurance companies in the world. Founded in 1868, MetLife is a global provider of life insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management. Serving approximately 100 million customers, MetLife has operations in nearly 50 countries and holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit www.metlife.com.
About MetLife Investment Management (“MIM”)
MetLife, Inc. provides investment management services to affiliates and unaffiliated investors through various subsidiaries. MetLife Investment Management (“MIM”), MetLife, Inc.’s institutional investment management business, has more than 800 investment professionals located around the globe. Subsidiaries of MetLife, Inc. that provide investment management services include Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, MetLife Investment Advisors, LLC, MetLife Investment Management Limited, MetLife Investments Limited, MetLife Investments Asia Limited, MetLife Latin America Asesorias e Inversiones Limitada and MetLife Japan Asset Management Company.