Windsor Star: Skyline Buys Four Local Properties

Posted On August 15, 2012

11873 Tecumseh Road East, Tecumseh, ON Purchased for Skyline Apartment REIT
2215 Huron Church Road, Windsor, ON Purchased for Skyline Commercial REIT

The Windsor Star, August 10, 2012, By Dave Hall

A Guelph-based real estate investment trust recently spent almost $25 million to acquire four Windsor-area properties and plans to keep its eye on the local market for future investment opportunities.

Skyline Group's commercial division paid $7.5 million for a commercial building at 3600 Rhodes Dr. and $7.25 million for properties at 2187 and 2215 Huron Church Rd. Its apartment division bought a residential building at 11873 Tecumseh Rd. E. for $9.9 million.

"We like what's going on in Windsor from a growth standpoint, and it's an affordable market compared to many others," said Mike Bonneveld, Skyline's Director of Acquisitions. "We're obviously very happy with our acquisitions in Windsor, and we plan to continue monitoring the area market."

The property on Rhodes Drive houses Southland Insurance, along with Compu-Quote, Dieppe Insurance Brokers and Canadian Insurance Alliance. It has almost 57,000 square feet of office space

The two Huron Church properties were recently redeveloped by Mid-South Land Developments Corp. on land previously occupied by Hallmark Tool Technologies.

Among the tenants are Applebee's Neighbourhood Grill and Bar, Wajax Industrial Components, Cafe Roma, Thompson Ahern International, LM Clark Customs Brokers and HOC Global Solutions.

Other tenants include Parkway Infrastructure Contractors and Windsor Essex Mobility Group, which are overseeing work on the parkway. It has about 60,000 square feet of office space.

"You always have to balance risk with opportunities, and we believe we've placed our money selectively in growing markets," said Bonneveld. "There are a few vacancies on the properties but nothing out of the ordinary."

The Skyline Group is made up of three primary entities - Skyline Management Inc., Skyline Asset Management and Skyline Wealth Management Inc.

All are owned by Skyline and exist to service Skyline Apartment REIT and Skyline Commercial REIT.

Skyline's apartment division was launched in June 2006 and currently owns 105 properties in 40 communities across four provinces.

The portfolio is worth about $690 million.

Its commercial division was launched in April of this year and currently has five properties, with a value of about $25 million.

The company was loosely formed in 1991 when brothers Martin Castellan and Jason Castellan, both of Walkerton, and friend Jason Ashdown, of Fergus, began buying and managing rental properties in Guelph while attending university.

Skyline was established in 1999 following eight years of growth.