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Companies & People: How Cornerstone and KKR connected

A Q&A with Cornerstone Companies’ Tag Birge and KKR’s Peter Sundheim

By John B. Mugford

J. Taggart “Tag” Birge

Call it a classic case of a marriage made in healthcare real estate (HRE) heaven, one that the sector is seeing more and more of these days.

One of the parties is a global investment firm and one of the biggest names on Wall Street, New York-based KKR & Co. Inc. (NYSE: KKR), which is involved in multiple asset classes including healthcare companies and other sectors of commercial real estate. The firm has more than $429 billion in assets under management (AUM) and was looking for a way to enter the HRE market.

The other is a 35-year-old HRE developer and full-service firm, Indianapolis-based Cornerstone Companies Inc. Cornerstone has focused on slow and steady growth over the years, accumulating and developing a portfolio in largely opportunistic fashion. It has developed more than $1 billion worth of mostly medical office buildings (MOBs) and manages more than 100 facilities with a total of about 7.7 million square feet.

The two entities came together in recent weeks after 

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