Leading industrial developer and investor acquires 280,000 SF of industrial properties in Southern New Jersey
PHILADELPHIA (July 20, 2021) — Wharton Industrial, a platform of real estate investment firm Wharton Equity Partners, announced today that it has acquired six industrial properties in Southern New Jersey, located in Pennsauken, N.J. and Cherry Hill, N.J. The purchase prices were not disclosed.
The acquisitions include a three-building, 153,400-square-foot portfolio located in Pennsauken, N.J. which Wharton Industrial acquired with Walton Street Capital. The portfolio is located within Wharton Industrial’s Twinbridge Industrial Park, a 1.1 million-square foot, 32-building warehouse complex which it acquired last year with Walton Street. The 100% occupied park is located just off Route 73, the buildings offer easy access to nearby Philadelphia via the Betsy Ross Bridge, Walt Whitman Bridge and Ben Franklin Bridge, and sits just a short drive from I-295 and the New Jersey Turnpike. Tom Palumbo and Bill Sitar of Sitar Realty served as brokers for the sale.
The remaining properties acquired by Wharton Industrial is an approximately 130,000 square foot, 3-building portfolio located in the Cherry Hill, N.J. submarket, which the firm acquired off-market from a long-term owner. As with the Pennsauken portfolio, Wharton Industrial will be instituting a comprehensive capital improvement program including replacing certain roofs, upgrading landscaping, repairing and painting exteriors, improving truck loading stations and paying.
“Southern New Jersey and the rest of Greater Philadelphia is home to one of the hottest and most promising industrial markets in the country, and these new acquisitions are a testament to our confidence in its continued growth potential,” said Peter C. Lewis, Founder & Chairman of Wharton Equity Partners. “As the largest industrial landlord in Pennsauken, we’ve witnessed the enduring appeal of this market first-hand, and the assets we have acquired in the Cherry Hill area represent a perfect fit with our strategy of acquiring first-class buildings in densely populated markets.”
Among its other activities, Wharton Industrial is also the developer behind the 283,500-square foot SoPhi Logistics Center in South Philadelphia — a formerly defunct railcar facility which Wharton transformed into a first-class last-mile delivery facility. The building was leased to Amazon in its entirety before being sold for $71.5 million in late 2020.
Besides its last mile strategy, Wharton Industrial has a long track record of developing modern warehouse and industrial facilities in proximity to highly populated metropolitan centers, often leasing them to major e-commerce and retail tenants. Its other holdings and past developments include a 988,000-square foot warehouse in Atlanta (leased to Philips Van Heusen); a 510,000-square-foot industrial facility in Lakeland, Florida; a 617,000 square-foot warehouse in Ocala, Florida (leased to Amazon); and a two-building, 600,000-square-foot industrial development in Greenville, South Carolina. All these properties were sold in the last 12 months generating gross sales proceeds of approximately $250 million and gross weighted average IRR in excess of 44%.
About Wharton Industrial
Wharton Industrial is a leading investor and developer of industrial real estate, with a robust pipeline of properties across the Eastern Seaboard, Florida and the southeast. Steered by the company’s forward-thinking leadership team, Wharton has been extremely active in the industrial sector since 2017 acquiring last-mile distribution facilities in proximity to major urban markets as well as developing big box spec development projects in the southeast. To date, Wharton Industrial is nearing $500 million in transactions. Wharton Industrial is a platform company of Wharton Equity Partners, an innovative real estate investment firm with extensive experience acquiring, developing and operating a wide range of real estate asset classes since its inception in 1987. Before shifting to building out its industrial platform, Wharton Equity Partners was an early mover in secondary-market multifamily investment, where it amassed a $500 million portfolio of value-add apartment properties across the South and Midwest, which it ultimately sold for a weighted average IRR well in excess of 20%.