Apr 19 2018

MBA students compete for $10M in global real estate venture competition in Chicago

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2015 Kellogg Real Estate Conference and venture competition winners

Teams of students from over 15 universities across the world will pitch their real estate venture hoping to secure as much as $10 million in equity funding plus $100,000 in cash and prizes.

The Kellogg Real Estate Conference and competition kicks off on April 19. The day begins with a preliminary round of pitching where the competition will be narrowed down to just four finalists.

This is the only competition of its kind among MBA students with a focus in real estate, said Denise Akason, associate director of the real estate program at Kellogg School of Management. Students pitch projects such as an investment in an apartment community in Spain or a shared office platform for medical providers.

The day-long conference includes a networking luncheon, two panels and a keynote speaker before the final round of pitches to investors from Blackstone, Blue Vista and Green Courte Partners.

The first panel will discuss capital markets with moderator Jeff Scott of Eastdil Secured, Amy Diamond of Northwestern University Investment Office, Craig Solomon of Square Mile Capital and Jay Weaver of Walton Street Capital.

The second panel will talk about the redevelopment trend in Chicago with a focus on LondonHouse, the Chicago Board of Trade and the Willis Tower. Experts from each of those projects will tell the story of each building—they include Rand Diamond of GlenStar Properties, David Moore of Equity Office and John Rutledge of Oxford Capital Group.

Millions of dollars are being poured into the modernization of these buildings but special attention is given by designers and architects to the iconic history.

LondonHouse, a name which pays homage to building s origins and the renowned jazz club inside, opened last year after renovations turned the former office tower into a hotel with a three-tiered rooftop.

The Chicago Board of Trade building and the Willis Tower are currently undergoing renovations that include redesigned lobbies, updated tenant and retail space, outdoor decks or rooftops and fitness centers.

One of the most interesting amenities planned for Willis Tower is the three-story transparent, glass structure set atop the existing stone plaza. The three floors will surround a garden and above that, a dramatic glass skylight.

Attendees will get a chance to hear the stories of these buildings, including the challenges developers, designers and architects face in this type of redevelopment.

The keynote speech will be given by Sandeep Manthrani the CEO of GGP, the second-largest mall portfolio owner in the country. He ll discuss the state of the retail market and how e-commerce will affect the future.

The Kellogg Real Estate Conference and Venture Competition is hosted by the Guthrie Center for Real Estate Research and the Kellogg Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative.

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