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Porsche Driving Experience Center in Atlanta, GA

Ken Ashley Headshot
Episode #: 113
Porsche Driving Experience Center in Atlanta, GA

Guest: Ken Ashley
Topics: COVID, work from home


Chris Ressa 0:02
This is retail retold the story of how that store ended up in your neighborhood. I’m your host, Chris ReSSA. And I invite you to join my conversation with some of the retail industry’s biggest influencers. This podcast is brought to you by DLC management. First, I’d like to thank one of our sponsors credit Intel, knowing the financial health of retailers is crucial for the success of your retail related business. That’s what credit Intel is for credit Intel analyzes the financial health of hundreds of publicly and privately held retailers in different sectors. With a subscription to credit Intel, you have access to comprehensive analysis of retailers, financial condition, and their Expert Analytics team. Visit credit for more information.

Welcome to retail retold everyone. Today I’m joined by Ken Ashley. Ken is executive director of Cushman Wakefield. He has been there for 25 years. He is a tenant rep broker, primarily in office and industrial. But as he likes to say he likes all flavors of ice cream. So excited for him to be here. Welcome to the show, Ken.

Ken Ashley 1:18
Thank you, Chris. It’s great to be here. It’s an honor to be on. I appreciate you.

Ressa 1:21
No problem, man, no problem. Well can tell us a little bit more about who you are and what you do.

Ashley 1:28
Well, at the very top, I want to recognize the super connector, Sarah Malcolm with quiet valor, who put the two of us together. And I’ve now listened to a number of your podcasts, you’re doing a great job, Chris, I really appreciate you sharing this knowledge and having people on the podcast I think it takes a lot of time behind the scenes. I recognize that so I appreciate what you’re doing. So telling you about myself. First of all, I’m married to Karen for 28 years, we have four great kids. My two sons are one is graduated in real estate and the other is graduating with a degree in real estate and finance. And so apparently the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Although I think there are going to probably be real estate private equity more than a broker’s which which I fully support. One’s going to be an interior designer and one’s going to be a computer scientist. So so we have three kids. And then on the business front, you know, I have a team. And we focus on mid mid cap assignments, which to us are about 300 million to about 5 billion in revenues, we find in that particular segment, we can add a lot of value, because they typically have enough real estate where we can make an impact. But they’re not IBM, they don’t have a full time real estate team. So my team can come in and help manage critical dates, help them through the process helped find fuel brokers all over America really all over the world. And I have a rule and it really applied non COVID. If the executive to whom I report burns jet fuel we do too. And that’s coming back into into fruition because I want to travel. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been cooped up too long.

Ressa 3:03
Yeah, I was just in Captiva Island last week. Next week, I’m going to Chicago Nice. Captiva was I was working, but I was taking we’re working from home still till July. And I was working from home in a different environment. So I brought my mother in law to help my wife with the kids. And that was my first air travel since February of 2020. And it was my kids first flight. So that was oh, that’s cool. That was great. My daughter was amazing. The entire time she is going to be four in June, my son will be three in September, on the way down, my son was great into the last half hour, then he turned into the kid that no one wanted to be around. So that was I was that person on the plane. Oh, but on the way home, both were spectacular. It was great. And it’s about two and a half hour flight. So they they did well. And then next week, I’m traveling for business to Chicago. I’m really excited about that.

Ashley 4:05
Well, that’s great. And you hit on something that I think about which is you know, when you travel for vacation, you know, do you turn to you go off the grid, or do you stay on the grid. And we’ve decided that if you declare up front, like we go to the beach, and we will I’ll stay on the grid and commit to work three hours a day. So command is communication. The downside of that is you’re thinking about work problems in the background. And so if you go off the grid, you can really relax but then you have the problem of coming back and dealing with all the pent up emails. So it’s a you got I believe you have to make the decision up front and commit to your decision. If you say you’re going off the grid and you sneak around and check email. I don’t think you’re doing the right thing.

Ressa 4:50
Totally agree. Totally agree. I would say over the last decade I’ve not unplugged that much and gone off the grid but I love what I do. And that’s okay. And I’m still, I think I’m pretty good at balancing work and family. And I think I’m pretty good at that. I’ve had moments where I’ve been able to unplug and truly refreshing when you can. But it is a challenge to unplug. In today’s world, there’s no doubt. But but but making it clear with your family on how it’s going to go, versus surprising them like them thinking you’re going to be present. And then you not being present is a problem, as you mentioned,

Ashley 5:32
and I’ve had friends, you know, who sneak around and check their email on the bathroom and come up people, let’s just just just be straight up about it and make a commitment and stick to it.

Ressa 5:39
Yeah, we’re gonna go to the next segment of the show. It’s called Clear the air. Are you ready? I got three questions. All right. Question one, what is one thing most people agree with, but you do not.

Ashley 5:54
I think the the idea that our society is forever changed by COVID is false. And what I mean by that is, and I hold up as evidence 2002. In September of 2001, we had the terrible attack on the World Trade Center. And many people in my network, and I thought about it too, said we would never again, work above the third floor of an office building, thinking that you could escape. Well, I then worked on the 33rd floor. I’m currently on the 31st floor of an office building. And we went back to work. I think when people feel safe, you know, we had COVID. In December, we’ve been vaccinated. And when you feel safe, you return to your old characteristics. So I think we’re going to be headed back to handshakes and hugs sooner than we all believe.

Ressa 6:40
Well, I hope you’re right. That would be incredible. And we will say, question two. What is one skill you don’t possess? But wish you did?

Ashley 6:52
I wish I could dance?

Ressa 6:55
Do you really? Do you want to dance? Is that what you really want to do? can come on?

Ashley 6:59
I mean, when we go into pitches, if I could just dance into the room, that would be awesome. But I have two left feet unfortunately, probably actually for the better now that I think about it.

Ressa 7:12
Okay, last question. When is the last time you tried something for the first time?

Ashley 7:17
Well, I’ll tell you recently, I started to tick tock account. Oh, man, back to dancing. I mean, it might really get my viewership up to have a dad dancing. But no, I was interested in Tik Tok, I think. And I found it to be really fun. Because to create a narrative in less than 60 seconds, it actually requires some thought. And so mine is at Where’s Where is Ken and it’s about my travels. And so when I go hiking, or go to a park or do something, recreational I’ll do a little video about it and tell the story. And again, it’s a challenge to be shorter rather than longer. My goal is to get to 30 seconds in a ticked off.

Ressa 8:01
So you’ll get there. Oh, well, you’ll get there like when you can’t dance, but I can do it to God.

Okay, and so you’re part of an organization CRDi summit you have coming up. So why don’t you tell us a little bit about that?

Ashley 8:15
Yeah, I’m excited about that. Appreciate you asking. So CRI stands for commercial real estate influencer. And it’s a list that we started, there was another fella dewclaw, who kept a list for about 10 years of people who were influential in the industry, and Duke and I shook hands and transitioned the list last year. So I produced the first Twitter list in the fall of last year and then a LinkedIn list several months ago. And it’s based on a formula. We put, we put some math behind it. And an influencer is not someone who just produces a lot of content or has a lot of followers. But someone who gets a lot of engagement page views. LinkedIn has something called the social selling index, which you can google and figure out how to check yours. And so we asked people to self report their social selling index, and did the same thing on Twitter and produce the list. And the magical thing has happened in that we have this approach of people from all different shops who are on a list. And it’s helped people people are getting better splits are getting promoted, they’re getting recognized. And I think that is just terrific. And one of those people rose put up their hand and said, Hey, can we get together? And so we are we’re going to have the CRDi summit at the Ritz Carlton in Truckee, California, which is near Lake Tahoe. October the seventh and eighth you can go to see rei and read all about it. So really excited that a list is going to come to life and people are going to be IRL in real life. And maybe that’s maybe that’s when the hugs and handshakes come back. Cool.

Ressa 9:49
Well, that’s great. Check that out, everyone. All right. You are in an interesting world you play in a world where not a lot of my guests play in which She’s in the office real estate world. And you’ve got a lot of context from, you know, $300 million companies to 5 billion on what’s going on, give us a little flavor, you and I had talked last week about some of the things you’re seeing in office real estate. And I think you bring a unique perspective. And I’d love for you to give us a little flavor of what you’re seeing out there and what you think is happening.

Ashley 10:22
Happy to Chris, first of all, there’s a real push pull going on with executives and trying to make decisions about what’s next. And it’s changing. You know, we had conversations in May and June of last year where CFOs, frankly, had the fantasy that they closed all their offices forever. And they all did the math in their head to see the impact on EBA. And they smile, and they were excited. But now, Human Resources officers and CEOs and others are realizing that we’re experiencing problems, there’s a real issue with digital exhaustion, we call it Microsoft published a report yesterday. And they reported since February of last year, that number of emails has increased by 40 point 6 billion emails. Think about that for a second. The number of teams meetings is up 148%. And so what’s really happening is not not just FOMO fear of missing out, but really missing out. People are getting overlooked for promotions, people are missing out on key opportunities, people are missing the opportunity to get to know their boss in a real way. And a friend of mine uses a phrase called engineering serendipity. And what he means by that is a normal times people are together. Chris, let’s say you and I are in the break room. We’re just grabbing a cup of coffee. And you say what are you working on? And I tell you, and I say man, I got this problem. And you say, Have you thought about this? And I go oh my god, that’s brilliant. Chris, that’s a serendipitous interaction. And because we have such structured meetings today, you’re not just going to happen by somebody else’s zoom, right? You’re invited, you’re there, you’ve got agenda, you’ve got to plan. There’s not the serendipitous interaction that we as human beings need and companies need to thrive. So are we going to continue to move into the hybrid workspace? Yeah, that was actually happening before COVID. And I believe productivity is still happening because it has to. We had a mandatory evacuation unlike any in human history in March, around about March 13 of last year, I remember it well, you do too. And so we all went home. And to the extent you were able to keep your job you worked hard because everyone was scared to death. You didn’t have a choice. But now that we’re starting to have a choice now that we’re starting to heal as a as a nation and as a world. We’re realizing that staying remote all the time is not optimal. And you saw it probably Jamie diamonds comments yesterday, Jamie runs the largest bank in the United States. And he said quote, I’m canceling my Zoom meetings. I’m done with that. He wants everybody to come back to the office. I will also say that sort of looking at office in a monolithic fashion can be a mistake. The The analogy is you know every American’s going to eat a hamburger for dinner tonight. Well, of course, that’s not true. People have different appetites, different approaches different diets. And it’s the same thing in office, some company cultures are a lot more supportive of you living in Boise, but having an office in Chicago, but a lot of cultures now we’re going to ask people to come back.

Ressa 13:30
Great analysis, they’re really appreciate it. The engineering the that serendipitous interaction, I like to call the power of the human connection. I’ve said this a lot, whether it’s training and development, onboarding, the social interaction, the serendipitous engineering of serendipitous engagement, that you talked about the collaboration in person, all those things, I think make being in person and teams working together in person.

Ashley 14:00
Valuable. Yeah, Chris, I’ll say one more thing. And that is that, you know, we at my company, Cushman and Wakefield, we’ve surveyed 60,000 people, we have 3.5 million data points since March of last year, in a survey thing called experience per square foot. One of the key learnings that really surprised me is the people that are suffering the most during the stay at home situation are millennials, the digital natives. And a lot of it is because of what I talked about earlier, there’s such a need when you’re a young person to get in front of your boss or your leaders. And you probably remember starting your career going to lunch with your boss was amazing to watch her or him and to listen to them talk and learn skills that can’t be taught in college but only can be experienced in the workplace. And there’s a there’s a super strong fear of missing out I see it my own kids and their work relationships, and that this is real. So it’ll be fascinating to see how the office of all have, you know Google last week really released a report. And they’re trying to create a much more flexible office environment, listen to this, they’re creating balloon meeting rooms. So the way it works is there’s a device about the size of a small suitcase on wheels, and you drag it around, and you hit a button and it pops up a balloon, which keeps your conversation confidential. If you can see, it’s translucent, you can see through it, and you walk into your balloon meeting anywhere. They’re also experimenting with moving the air conditioning. So above the ceiling, that’s called the plenum and an office building. And in every office building in America, it’s fixed where the vents are, they’re gonna have zippers, in their air conditioning vents, so you can open a vent anywhere you want. So that’s the kind of thinking that’s happening. The last thing I’ll say, Chris, is that, you know, in 2009, some great companies were created Instagram, Uber, and others. I can’t wait to see what’s going to have been created during this pandemic.

Ressa 15:59
Yeah, totally agree with that, where I was going with the human connection. And as your friend calls the engineering, those serendipitous interactions, how does Jamie Dimon or other C suite executives quantify that? Because rent per square foot is very quantifiable. So how do you how do you put a value on that?

Ashley 16:24
There’s no exact science to do it. I guess the analogy would be like baking a cake. You know, how do you how do you price each of the ingredients? You? Don’t you look at the cake. And the equivalent in corporate America is what are sales doing? What is earnings doing? What are profits doing? And that is that’s the real thing that’s happening right now, with a lot of executives, they’re looking around and business is booming. We need all hands on deck, we need people here working now together in person. Because we have a real situation, we got to make more widgets. So you, you can’t price serendipity. Until you see the end result.

Ressa 17:02
I like that. I would say this, that makes it a challenge. Because you can price rent per square foot. And you can price your real estate cost. And if you’re comparing Well, as you said, I was productive. In 2020, you made a good point because we had to be, that is a really good point because we had to be and you’re productive. And business is booming. Why do I need to take the profits I’m making and put it back into office space. Now I believe that for all the reasons in the human power of the human connection, that it’s critical. And the digital exhaustion stats that you gave earlier, are quite astounding. And I’ve read a lot about digital exhaustion. I think more people have digital exhaustion than realize. But again, I think one of the things that would be so helpful is if people could figure out a better way to quantify some of that, because I think that would make so much easier for people.

Ashley 18:15
Well listen, you know, companies continue to try to quantify innovation, they try to figure out you know, how productivity happens. In this, that’s the whole idea of experience per square foot is that the workplace Now, Chris, it was happening before the pandemic, but it’s certainly happening post pandemic, and I will make the statement post pandemic is that the workplace has to be an experience, you have to want to come to work. A lot of companies are struggling now because they they don’t want to mandate until September that people come back to work. But they’re encouraging people, some companies to even have a contest to see who will come into the office the most. The reason, by the way, most companies are saying return to the office in September is there’s a cognition amongst HR professionals that people are under an enormous amount of stress. And if you take away, you have to deal with childcare issues during the summer. When schools are out in most of America that could compound the stress of having people come back. So after Labor Day seems to be the the most common approach to return to the office.

Ressa 19:22
I like to say that in 2020, I was living at work not working from home. I want to get back to the routine of going to the office. I’m excited about it. You’re excited about it, it’s your livelihood. Are most Americans excited about it. You know, I go on LinkedIn and I see a lot of people who would talk about like, remote work is the future and all these things.

Ashley 19:49
Well, it’s back to the hamburger thing. You know, not everybody’s gonna have the same thing for dinner. And people are different stages of their careers. So let’s look at that. sort of barbell ends. If you are a knowledge worker, maybe you’re a broker, maybe you’re a developer who is at a senior level in your career, absolutely, you can work from Boise, I have a lot of friends who live in New York are now living in Florida and fly back to Manhattan when I have meetings, you could do it. But for a lot of people who are younger, and in the mid part of their career, it’s increasingly difficult to get the raises the bonuses, the promotions, and the recognition that they deserve in a completely remote environment,

Ressa 20:32
I would tell you that I think it’s just as much on the senior executives to be in the office, I mean, if you want to really maintain or transform your culture, and that’s important, and that’s the livelihood of your business.

leadership needs to be present.

Ashley 20:55
Yeah, and the other thing that I’ve that I’ve been thinking a lot about is that there are different job types. So we talked about senior status versus Junior status, I was talking to a director of real estate of one of America’s largest engineering companies yesterday. And he pointed out that his engineers are very quiet in the office, very heads down, there’s not a lot of energy in the office. So it depends on the job type. If you’re a salesperson, if you’re in marketing, if you’re creative, if you’re advertising, you probably need to be in the office, if you’re a heads down, introverted, kind of if you’re if you’re programming and code, maybe you can live in Boise to

Ressa 21:34
Great point. Okay. That was great insights.

One more question as it relates to the the future of the office environment. What’s going to happen with co working? This feels like it’s accelerating now. What’s your take on co working?

Ashley 21:54
Well, I think a couple things are happening in co working. First of all, it’s not going away. You know, before the pandemic and before the we work had its troubles, you know, the industry was was just sort of stunned at what we work and accomplished, although it does now appear that they had some significant speed bumps. But the idea of of companies, in all cases, committing to 10 year lease terms does seem so 2019 I think there’s a strong fo ti fear of term fear of commitment. And so if you are going to have a project going on in Chicago, or Philadelphia, or some city, and you want to see if it’s going to work. Now maybe you put the sales guys in for a six month co working engagement. I think the second thing that you’re going to see happen is that so there’s a rise of co working and demand from corporate America, I think the second thing you’re going to see happen is that landlords are going to create their own co working environments as an amenity. Because, you know, there was a mistake and 2019 that you can create the right kind of coffee, the right kind of, you know, cold brew coffee. And you had to wear mock turtlenecks and be cool, which is hard for me, by the way. But now landlords are figuring out that if you create the right design, and you put a few of the right people in the space, a lot of people can do co working. So I think it’s going to become normalized as an amenity, in lots of dense urban environments.

Ressa 23:26
Is that to say that, I don’t know, let’s take a traditional office REIT. They’re going to start competing with the WeWorks and industrious of

the world rather than least to them more

partner with them in the industrious case because they are going to just do their own co working model.

Ashley 23:48
Yeah, I think I think you’ll see both the partnership model that industrialists is using will certainly happen. And by the way too big service providers, the commercial real estate services companies like Cushman and Wakefield, offer services. So if you are a large REIT, and you want to create a co working, you can ring up your favorite service provider, and they’ll send consultants out to do it all for you. So it’s not like you have to figure out what brand of coffee there are, there are experts that can help you. So yes, I think you’ll see both.

Ressa 24:16
And pre pandemic most of the, whether it was a read or office landlords, they were primarily just going to lease or partner with co working groups. They weren’t going to be co working operator themselves. Is that right?

Ashley 24:30
That is right. Because before the pandemic, you know, landlords could get most corporates, they said this is just the way it is it’s going to be a 10 year it’s going to be a seven year or even maybe a five year but you’re going to have to commit Mr. tenant if you want to come to my building. Well COVID change that.

Ressa 24:48
Okay. All right. Let’s

move on to the next. That was great insights really appreciate that. I want to move on to the next. Typically, this the part of the show is the story of how that store ended up in your neighborhood. But you’re going to tell a story of how that corporate office ended up in your neighborhood. And we’re going to tell an interesting one, and I’ll let you intro, which company we’re talking about here.

Ashley 25:16
Yeah, it’s it’s Porsche, Porsche. Porsche used to be based in Reno, Nevada in the United States. And I think they got tired of a timezone, you know, a couple more time zones between Reno and Atlanta. And they moved to Atlanta, because it’s, it’s the closest and least expensive city on the East Coast and closer to Stuttgart, Germany. So their conference calls are a little easier to do. And they were in a traditional office building for a number of years. And I had the pleasure of representing them. And one day, the CEO, his office called and set up a meeting with me, which was pretty exciting. And the two of us sat in his boardroom just together. And he said, I have a vision, I want to create something called one Porsche drive. I said, Okay, tell me more about that. He said, Well, it’s going to be our headquarters. It’s going to be a training center for our employees and dealership teams. But it’s also going to be an Experience Center. And so tell me more, what is an Experience Center? And he looked at me kind of, like you, dummy. You said, You’re gonna drive cars. And I said, on a track, he said, Yes, on a track. You think we can do it? And I thought about it for a second, I said, probably not. Why did you say that? And a little risky, telling the CEO No, but I said, you can hear a tire squeal for you know, a mile away. If we put it in the suburbs of Atlanta, people are gonna kill you, they’re gonna hate you. So you fast forward, we engaged on the project and looked at 72 different sites. And we were on our last tour, we were in a helicopter.

Ressa 26:51
Let me let me again for a second. So 72 sites, were these all land? Or were these buildings you’re gonna have to tear down? Obviously, it’s gonna be a tear down.

Ashley 27:00
It was a bill to suit Good, good question. And most of these were either raw dirt or they were, you know, buildings that were dilapidated, that can be torn down.

Ressa 27:10
And where you buy where you is the preference for Porsche to buy or lease.

Ashley 27:14
Initially, they stated that they wanted to lease and have a developer hold the dirt. And then at the end, they changed their mind and ended up just writing the check, which was a smart move for Porsche. Okay, keep going. Yeah, Germans have a view that this, you know, they plan for 75 or 100 years, very much. Unlike Americans, they could see, they can see way down the road much further than most Americans. So we’re, we’re on our final tour, we’re in a helicopter, we spent two and a half hours driving flying around Atlanta, which is a long time up there. And the last site, we’re about approaching, and it’s adjacent to the Hartsfield Jackson International Airport, the busiest airport in the world. And state officials arrange to shut down all air traffic for 45 seconds, we flew over the center of the airport and you look left and right, you see planes coming at you would make you pay attention. And we flew around the site three times, it took about a minute. And then we got out of there. And the CEO leaned over and said, give me more information on that site. Well, that’s the site they chose. It was the former Ford assembly plant. And it had been demolished by a developer. And it was adjacent to the airport. So noise was no longer an issue. And as we were negotiating the transaction, I went to meet with the Commissioner of the Department of Transportation. And I said, we’re gonna have to change the name of the road. He said, why is that? I said, It’s Henry Ford Boulevard, we can’t have Porsche. So they changed the name of the road. And today, I’m proud to tell you the facility it was $100 million deal on 56 acres. And that most real estate deals that we work on are all about, you know, spending dollars for corporate America’s perspective, right? Well, I remember the Germans sitting over there in the corner of the room looking at the revenue model for the Experience Center, and I saw them smile, which is a rare thing. And today they are killing it. And when next time you come to Atlanta, Chris, I’ll have to take you down there we can go drive Porsches, it’s a really terrific experience.

Ressa 29:16
And that experience centers for any consumer can go to the Porsche corporate headquarters and

pay and drive a Porsche.

Ashley 29:23
You can the only thing you can’t do is you can’t drive your own car because they have their cars and their breaks. You can take delivery of your new Porsche should you wish to there on the Experience Center. But yes, anybody can go just Google it and you can sign up and it’s it’s really pretty affordable. I don’t mean to sound like an advertisement for them, but it’s a whole lot of fun.

Ressa 29:42
Yeah, sounds like a whole lot of fun. That is really cool. And how many employees are in this office building that’s adjacent to a track

Ashley 29:50
you know, I’m gonna estimate they have about 300 people there. It’s there’s something to running a car company. There’s a lot of customer service and dealer support issues. Use and all the engineering and manufacturing is still done in the amazing facility and stuck are Germany. But they’re running one of the most successful car companies in the world out of Atlanta, Georgia.

Ressa 30:12
What a unique story and you are on a you were on a helicopter tour with Porsche looking at sites and a helicopter because you had to go through, you know, go see a lot of sites in a short amount of time.

And they actually shut down air traffic for you guys to fly through. Wow, how long did they shut it down for

Ashley 30:33
about 45 seconds. And, you know, I would have been okay with five minutes because looking at those planes coming at you was pretty scary. The pilots were everybody was definitely paying attention. But But though, that was that was a safe amount of time.

Ressa 30:50
And tell me about the deal. Was this a small landlord, a large landlord, who owned to this, or property owner because and who own this?

Ashley 31:03
Yep. So back to retail Jim Jacoby on the side. Jacoby, of course is a well known Walmart developer. And Jim has been very creative over the years. And he bought the old plant with no idea of what it was going to be. And by the way, he recycled a lot of the plant and made back a lot of his reduce his basis. And it was sitting there vacant. And he held on to it for probably a couple of years, just feed the tiger. And I called one of his guys one day, and I said, Hey, I want to talk to you about this dirt. We might have a project for you. And the guy came up, but they were pretty skeptical. I of course couldn’t tell him that it was Porsche. But we still laugh about that today, because he was given me in a professional way, a hard time. You know, what are you going to do? And I couldn’t tell him much about it. But But Jim Jacoby made the deal.

Ressa 31:54
And did Jim want to lease it to them at first?

Ashley 31:58
Well, Jim was responding to what we wanted, which was a leasehold kind of deal. And then the powers that be the they call their board the borscht on the worst on decided that they wanted to own which is typically their model. And to Jim’s credit, I mean, he responded very quickly with a sort of a for sale, and then build a suit proposal.

Ressa 32:23
How long did the deal take two and a half years? Two and a half years? And when I say how long the deal take? When is the start of the deal? And when is the end of the deal in your mind?

Ashley 32:34
That’s a good question. So we consummated the deal of July of 2012. And, you know, we started that time before. And a lot of the on these big office build a suit type deals, a lot of it is on the tenant side, because they have to figure out what they want. They have to figure out what the demand is what the kind of the space that they need. And it’s it’s probably appropriate, but it’s what corporate America does. We’ve put together a lot of steering committees. And so there’s a lot of input from a lot of people.

Ressa 33:04
I totally, totally get it. In this particular transaction. After you went under contract. How long did it take the contract to actually go hard? Do you remember? Because I’m sure whether it’s the Department of Transportation and changing a road name. I’m sure it wasn’t completely closed up. When this contract was signed, I’m sure there was a ton of due diligence on this. There was a ton of things that had to go in before it was official.

Ashley 33:35
Yeah, in this particular case, the due diligence happened while the parties were talking. And the sort of under contract hard was relatively short, it could be a month or two. Oh, wow. But you know, everybody’s interests were aligned, Jim wanted to do a deal with Porsche. And Porsche loved the site and came to really like Jacoby. It didn’t hurt that the CEO was also a pilot and loved aircraft. And so the facility today is underneath 26, right, which is the busiest runway at the busiest airport in the world. And they put it in sound baffling. But sound is really not an issue inside of their office building. They did a really good job with the design. And if you go outside, you’re going to hear cars and airplanes, but that’s what you want. That’s pretty exciting.

Ressa 34:27
And it’s alright. Well, that’s how Porsche headquarters ended up in Atlanta, Georgia. Very cool.

Thank you for sharing that story.

Ashley 34:39
Absolutely. I’m trying to get him to serve grits in the cafeteria.

Ressa 34:45
Okay, well,

we’re onto the last part of the show can and we call a retail wisdom. Are you ready? I’m ready. All right. I got three questions for you. Question one. What extinct retailer Do you wish would come back from the dead

Ashley 35:00
You know, as I think about it, one of my favorite stories growing up was RadioShack. And I know RadioShack is there are some independent operators that are still out there just kind of fighting the good fight, but I wish RadioShack would come by just love to go around and check out all their technology. And I can only imagine what were the RadioShack today would look like.

Ressa 35:19
Yeah, me too. Question too,

was the last item over $20 that you bought in a store?

Ashley 35:26
So I guess the answer would be I bought a Bluetooth speaker and Best Buy. And I realized we’re talking to a retail audience. So I will try to come to stores more often now. But um, but I find myself buying crap on online, unfortunately.

Ressa 35:43
Understood. Okay. Last question. If you and I were shopping at Target,

and I lost you, would I would I find you in Canada.

Ashley 35:54
Well, initially you would find me at the Starbucks at the front and once I got my cup of coffee, I would wander back to sports and outdoors. Looking for some new hunting gear or some new hiking gear probably.

Ressa 36:07
Well, I hope you get to go on some great hikes this year. Yeah. Thank you for coming on the show. Thank you, Chris. You are great. This this was fantastic. I really appreciate it.

Thank you for listening to retail retold. If you want to share a story about a retail real estate deal that you were a part of on our show. Please reach out to us at retail retold at DLC This show highlights the stories behind the deals from all perspectives. So it doesn’t matter if you are a retailer, broker, entrepreneur, architect or an attorney. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to retail retold so you don’t miss out on next Thursday’s episode

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