Martin Mayer

President’s Message: A Wild Ride

President's Message: A Wild Ride

In my last President’s Message, I talked about how much had been accomplished in 2013 and how the year ended with a flurry of activity. Well, the first quarter of 2014 has been wild in many ways also (including the weather)!

This year began with the groundbreaking of Magnolia Marketplace in New Orleans, a 100,000+ square-foot shopping center we are developing with JCH Development that will bring new retailers to an underserved portion of Central City. And just days later, we announced the contract for Perkins Rowe, a high-profile, mixed-use property with 364,648 square feet of retail and 126,000 square feet of Class A office space, plus upscale apartments and condominiums. The contract to provide leasing, sales and property and construction management services represents the single largest such contract in Stirling’s history.

Additionally, we celebrated 2 Grand Openings during the 1st Quarter. The first was for Phase I of Fremaux Town Center in Slidell, a regional shopping center anchored by Kohl’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Best Buy & T.J.Maxx that we are developing in partnership with CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. A new, full-service Walgreens also grand opened in Terrytown on the Westbank of New Orleans, which was followed a few weeks later by our announcement that we will be developing a full-service Walgreens in Metairie at the intersection of Veterans & Power Boulevards.

As our business continues to boom, so too does the Gulf South Region. I have had the opportunity to share the positive news about our markets numerous times during the last quarter. It is something I truly get very passionate about doing.

In February, I was invited to give the ACREcon Keynote Presentation at the annual conference hosted by the Alabama Center for Real Estate (ACREcon) in Birmingham with over 500 in attendance. In early March, Jimmy Maurin, Townsend Underhill and I were asked to give a presentation on the New Orleans market and economy at the Annual Spring meeting of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Foundation Governor’s Board in New Orleans. One of the reasons I love giving these presentations is because the reaction by the audience afterward is always amazement at what is happening down here in the Gulf Coast – The Third Coast.

And despite the fact that spring is here, there is no time for rest. We are currently preparing for ICSC ReCon in Las Vegas. And stay tuned for some new announcements in the near future – it’s going to be a wild ride.

April 15, 2014|Blog, Corporate, President's Message|

President’s Message: Forging Ahead in 2014

President's Message Collage 2

It hardly seems possible that we are beginning another year. It seems as if I was just emailing about the start of “Lucky 13“!

“Lucky 13” kicked off with our announcement of a joint venture with CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. to develop Fremaux Town Center in Slidell, Louisiana, and in just 2 months, we will have the grand opening of Phase I. The year ended with the successful closing of the land acquisition and development financing for Magnolia Marketplace in New Orleans, a partnership with JCH Development that will break ground this month.

In between those 2013 bookends, we also accomplished:

As proud as I am of our team for all of these accomplishments and more, I am even more proud of the spirit of team and caring for others. Through the leadership of the Stirling Stewardship Committee, the Stirling team significantly contributed money, essential items, and most importantly generously volunteered their personal time for causes such as Habitat for Humanity, food collection drives, breast cancer walks, YMCA Corporate Cup and Volunteers of America’s Christmas Wish Project.

It is because of this talented, dedicated, and motivated team that we are able to achieve so much. I am proud to be part of such a team. Looking ahead to 2014, it will be a very exciting year for Stirling as well as the Gulf South.

January 10, 2014|Blog, Corporate, President's Message|

President’s Message: Lucky 13!

President's MessageAs we embark upon a new year – 2013 (lucky 13!), I look back in amazement at how much our Stirling team has accomplished over the last twelve months.

We started the year with the acquisition of Avant Properties in Shreveport, Louisiana and capped it off with our recently announced joint venture development deal with CBL Properties of the Fremaux Town Center in Slidell, Louisiana.

In between those two milestone bookends, consider the following list of other accomplishments:

  • The kickoff of Mid-City Market in New Orleans.
  • The historic redevelopment of the American Legion Building into a state of the art Walgreens Drug Store on Magazine Street in New Orleans.
  • The opening of The Fresh Market on St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans.
  • The $24 million acquisition of Tiger Manor Apartments in Baton Rouge.
  • The securing of two new Walgreens development deals in Terrytown & Gulfport.
  • The opening of Sam’s Club at River Chase in Covington.
  • The successful closing of over $100 million in financing.
  • The increase of over 16% of our commercial brokerage volume.

And while all of this was happening, we were also able to implement a new, state-of-the-art accounting software, introduce a brand new corporate website and complete a major restructuring of the company.

These accomplishments are all tributes to the outstanding team of professionals at Stirling Properties.  We are now setting our sights on an outstanding new year and plan on making some additional major announcements soon.  2013 will certainly be a banner year – and lucky too.

January 23, 2013|Blog, Corporate, President's Message|

Louisiana Continues to Leap Forward in All Areas

Top States For Doing Business
Leading economic development magazine Area Development has just released its 2012 “Top States for Doing Business” survey of national site selectors, and Louisiana has posted its best showing ever:

  • #1 in Cooperative State Government
  • #2 in Incentives Programs
  • #2 in Economic Recovery
  • #3 in Leading Workforce Development Programs
  • #3 in Speed of Permitting
  • #4 in Overall Business Environment
  • #4 in Cost of Doing Business
  • #5 in Labor Climate
  • #6 Top State for Doing Business

This is a remarkable set of top-10 votes for Louisiana from national economic development consultants; you can see the full report here.

These latest rankings are just another example of what we see happening all around us.  Louisiana continues to leap forward in all areas – jobs, economic development, business climate, entrepreneurship, etc.  As I tell people around the country the “Louisiana Story”, their reactions are somewhere between amazement and skepticism.  I can tell some of them flatly don’t believe a word I am saying.

That is what makes telling the story even more remarkable.

October 22, 2012|Blog, Corporate, Market Research, President's Message, Rankings|

Southeast Super-Region Committee awarded gold medal by IEDC

Super Region Committee

Just a few short years ago, I was interviewed by a reporter for an article focusing on the extreme divisiveness, dislike and disdain between New Orleans and Baton Rouge. At that time, I even wrote an opinion column, The Feud is Fading, pointing out the futility in this situation and how it was preventing our region from competing nationally and globally.

It was from those roots that discussions began among a small group who had business interests which cross parish lines, from New Orleans and Baton Rouge, to form the Southeast Super- Region Committee.  So today it is truly exciting and gratifying to have the Super-Region Committee being recognized for an award for cross collaboration by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).

To me, this represents hope for the continued future success of our region.

Click here to see the article released by Greater New Orleans, Inc.

ICSC World Summit – Shanghai, China

I just recently returned from the ICSC World Summit in Shanghai, China, where worldwide trustees gathered for a meeting.

I was asked to take part in one of the panel discussions to talk about Stirling Properties and the risks, challenges, and opportunities of being a private, regionally-focused real estate firm that deals in multiple property types.

In contrast, others on the panel were CEOs of large public REITs and foreign-based development firms who discussed the same issues from their vantage points.

Needless to say, my perspective was starkly different from theirs in many aspects.

Interestingly enough, several other trustees approached me afterwards to say how much they envied our position of being able to grow in our own backyard and carve a unique niche for ourselves.

What was amazing was that these comments came from some of the largest multinational retail developers in the world.

Sometimes going halfway around the world helps us to focus even more clearly on our own backyard.

September 17, 2012|Blog, Corporate, President's Message|
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