A message from Gabe Finke, CEO of Ascentris
Like most of you, we have used these past few days to adjust to life in a new physical environment. While we are fortunate we can accomplish most of what we do remotely, we are not immune to the mental and emotional toll of watching the markets decline precipitously and businesses and employees suffer. For some of us, the virus has not yet arrived. For others, it is all too close. The most important thing we can all do is keep our employees, families and loved ones safe and healthy.
Ascentris has been busy this last week stress testing its portfolios. That analysis is telling us that our portfolios are defensive and we have been conservative with both our cash reserves and leverage strategy. What the numbers do not tell us, but what we already knew, is that we have the very best partners in the industry. Your responsiveness and transparency during this time reinforce just how fortunate we are to be considered your partner. We also have amazing investors that are always available, have a long-term perspective, and share our views concerning building and maintaining healthy partnerships. Thanks to this, Ascentris and its portfolios are well-positioned to weather this storm.
In light of recent events, our teams will be working with you and your teams in the coming weeks to revisit the business plans for each of the properties we manage together. We recognize that each property has its own set of circumstances and thus will require its own unique approach going forward. Please know that we are not ones to take a “wait-and-see” approach. We have learned from similar situations in the past that we must be more proactive than the market and modify the plan as often as needed. Our trusted partners are our eyes and ears and we are here to support whatever course of action makes the most sense, be it defensive or offensive management of the properties. Leasing, development and other capital strategies require cash, and we are prepared to discuss any adjustments you suggest as we determine what the new business plan should be.
In line with the spirit of our annual Partner Summit, this email is being sent to each of our key partnerships in an open format. Our Partner Summit is intended to foster collaboration and creative thought-leadership and sharing in a non-competitive setting. To that end, this email has the same intent. If an issue arises at any property within one of Ascentris’ portfolios, please do not forget there is a broader set of expertise beyond your own firm that can be utilized as a sounding board or sharing of best practices. Most of you already know one another, but all of our strategic partners have been copied on this email as a reminder. We plan to share our own best practices which are being developed in real-time with each of you, and we hope that you will do the same with lessons learned in your management of other assets during this unique time.
Finally, we want to thank everyone for your friendship, partnership and hard work in these trying times. We will not make a prediction of how long this will last or how bad it will get, but we know that we will get through it, be ready for what comes next and be stronger as a result.
With our sincerest appreciation,
Gabe Finke, on behalf of the entire Ascentris Team