Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Short takes around town: Another financial institution on the ropes and Fred Drew is out at the Kern Community Foundation
* .... DREW OUT AT FOUNDATION: I learned today that Fred Drew is out as CEO of the Kern Community Foundation. Drew has only been on the job since January. The press release from the Foundation was short and to the point and offered no explanation. But obviously things didn't work out between Drew and the Foundation Board of Directors. Judi McCarthy, the Foundation board chair, issued a press release saying only that Drew and the Board of Directors reached "mutual agreement" that he would leave effective October 31. In the meantime, retired CEO Noel Daniells "has been engaged by the Board to offer continued guidance and assistance" and McCarthy will serve as acting executive until a new CEO is in place. An appreciation dinner was just held for Noel last month at Stockdale Country Club. Looks like he'll stick around longer to help in the transition.
* ... INDUSTRIAL REAL ESTATE REBOUND?: We all know about the funk that residential real estate is in, but what about the commercial and industrial side? I follow the blog of Wayne Kress, a principal over at CB Richard Ellis Bakersfield, and learned that things are indeed slow but may be showing signs of a rebound. (check out his posting here). Kress said we have recovered a bit from the "lowly performance" of the first and second quarters. Some of the numbers and percentages here are staggering. From his blog:
"Sales volume is down 30% over 2008 and a whopping 91% over 2007. Average prices have actually increased over each of the last two years (+11% in 2008 and +7% in 2009), but this is a little deceiving, as the average building size has also declined in each of those years (by 43% in 2008 and by another 53% in 2009). There is generally an inverse relationship between unit pricing and size: the smaller the building, the higher the unit price. This holds here."