Thursday, April 11, 2013
Chips Off The Table
American Realty Capital Properties (ARCP) withdrew its offer for Cole Credit Property Trust III (CCPT III) this morning. I can't say that I am surprised by the announcement in light of CCPT III completing the acquisition of its sponsor, Cole Holdings, late last week. In thinking about this transaction-that-wasn't, I'm of the opinion that both companies achieved a short-term victory. CCPT III was able to fend off the mean "bully" Nicholas Schorsch and ARCP, while Mr. Schorsch was able to adroitly position himself as a CCPT III shareholder advocate. More importantly, he has shrewdly set benchmark prices for a major competitor; prices that investors, independent broker / dealers and competitors will look to when the combined CCPT III / Cole Holdings lists as Cole Real Estate Investments (CREI) later in the quarter. How CREI's stock trades relative to the ARCP-set hurdles of $12.50 per share and $13.59 per share - forget the $10.00 per share investors paid for their shares - is the new determinant of success, and the line - either over or under - which Cole or ARCP can claim victory. While one phase of this saga is over, the epilogue is unfinished.