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Companies & People: After selling its data centers, Sila is now fully focused on HRE

CIO Jon Sajeski discusses the REIT’s past and where it’s now headed

By Connie M. McCaffrey

Jon C. Sajeski

Jon C. Sajeski has been a well-known, respected presence in the healthcare real estate (HRE) sector for many years.

He’s been serving as the chief investment officer of healthcare for Tampa, Fla.-based Sila Realty Trust Inc., formerly known as Carter Validus Mission Critical REIT (I and II) Inc., for about six years now. For about a dozen years before that, Mr. Sajeski was the VP of acquisitions and leasing for Jupiter, Fla.-based Rendina Healthcare Real Estate, one of the nation’s largest privately held HRE companies.

Here’s a little history on how Sila Realty Trust came to be: Carter Validus Mission Critical REIT I was formed in 2010 as a non-traded real estate investment trust (REIT) focused on investing in data centers and HRE facilities, both of which were considered “alternative” commercial real estate (CRE) asset classes at the time.

In 2014, Carter Validus Mission Critical REIT II was formed and it, too, invested in the same types of assets.

About three years ago, the two REITS were merged into one larger REIT. Then in September 2020, the firm announced that it had closed on an “internalization transaction” and was rebranding the REIT as Sila Realty Trust, with company officials noting that doing so reflected a “change in the strategic direction of the company.”

The nature of that change became clear when the company, in May 2021, announced that it was selling its entire portfolio of 29 data centers and focusing on the HRE sector. The $1.3 billion sale of the data centers was announced in July. The buyer was a Singapore-based REIT, Mapletree Industrial Trust, which is listed on the Singapore Exchange.

In light of the fact that Sila has sold its data center portfolio and is now entirely focused on the HRE space, HREI™ reached out to Mr. Sajeski and posed a few questions.

HREI: What was the purpose of last year’s ‘internalization’ transaction?

Sajeski: Internalizing of our management was a key step in our strategy to continue to provide value enhancement and ultimate liquidity to our stockholders. The transaction has and will continue to result in substantial general and administrative savings to the company as we no longer pay fees to a third-party external advisor – for example, acquisition and disposition fees, as well as asset and property management fees.

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