CenterPoint’s Chief Operating Officer, Jim Clewlow, was interviewed by Chicago Business Journal on the heels of the announcement of his appointment to his new role.
Read what Jim has to say about CenterPoint’s investment strategy, the state of industrial real estate investment, his views on multistory warehouse development, and more in the article “CenterPoint Properties’ new COO Jim Clewlow on the Chicago Industrial Investor’s Strategy.”
By Wendell Hutson – Staff Reporter, Chicago Business Journal
Oct 24, 2023
Chicago’s hometown industrial real estate investor, CenterPoint Properties owns 325 properties totaling 66 million square feet nationwide.
Nearly 30% of that footprint is local, with 19.7 million square feet across 67 properties in its Chicago portfolio — not counting the seven properties it has sold so far this year for $175 million.
With a national and local portfolio that size, CenterPoint named its new chief operating officer this month, elevating longtime Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer Jim Clewlow to the role.
The Oak Brook-based company acquires, develops, and manages industrial properties, focusing on areas near transportation hubs, ports and population centers in top markets, including Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.
In Chicago, recent projects include a 990,140-square-foot distribution facility at 3351 N. Brandon Road in Joliet, where the developer is also wrapping up construction on another project, a 977,145-square-foot industrial facility at 2903 Schweitzer Road.
Clewlow joined CenterPoint in 1997 after working as a broker at CBRE for 11 years. His first role was vice president of acquisitions, development and leasing. Two years later, he was promoted to senior vice president of investments and joined the executive committee. He was named chief investment officer in 2005.
He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
The Chicago Business Journal touched base with Clewlow about what CenterPoint likes to invest in and where. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
What types of industrial properties does CenterPoint favor for investments?
It’s whatever the tenants really want and whatever industrial demand is indicating. Do we have manufacturing? Yes. I would say when you talk about logistics, what fits under the logistics umbrella is warehouses and truck terminals. There are about five or six property types that fall under logistics and warehouses.
How important is location for industrial properties?
We’re in every port market, including Chicago, the epic center of the country. We’re in Seattle, Oakland, L.A., Houston, Miami, New York, New Jersey — and all those markets come to Chicago via rail and interstate networks.
So, we’re really focused on being in markets that have port infrastructure and have high-density populations. We’ve been doing it now for about 20 years and have a national portfolio.
We used to be Chicago only, and now we’re fully nationalized. Chicago is a great market because it’s logistically advantaged from the standpoint that it’s in the middle of the country. It’s got great airport infrastructure and great rail infrastructure. O’Hare and Midway are busy airports. And then you’ve got the rail hub, and obviously, it’s an interstate hub. I’m not including the waterway hub, but that’s massive, too.
About CenterPoint Properties
CenterPoint is an industrial real estate company made up of dedicated thinkers, innovators and leaders with the creativity and know-how to tackle the industry’s toughest challenges. And it’s those kinds of problems — the delicate, the complex, the seemingly impossible — that we relish most. Because with an agile team, substantial access to capital and industry-leading expertise, those are exactly the kinds of problems we’re built to solve. For more information on CenterPoint Properties, follow us on LinkedIn. For all media inquiries, including requests for interviews with CenterPoint executives, please contact email@example.com or 630.586.8285.