Kevin Conlon has been a landlord and real estate investor continuously since 1981. He is the CEO of the Memphis Medical Redevelopment Group, LLC, a Tennessee real estate company specializing in the turnaround of distressed commercial real estate assets.
Jeffrey King is a California Real Estate Broker who has been investing in real estate since 1987 and has been an active investor in Jackson, MS and Memphis, TN. He is the Chief Operating Officer of the Memphis Medical Redevelopment Group, LLC, a Tennessee real estate company specializing in the turnaround of distressed commercial real estate assets.
Meridian Pacific Properties, Inc. is a corporation headquartered in Southern California that purchases, renovates, leases and sells positive cash flow single and multi-family residences to investors.
MO: What’s the story behind Meridian Pacific Properties? How did the two of you meet and decide to launch a business together?
Kevin & Jeffrey: We both worked in the high tech semi-conductor industry. Kevin was the CEO and Jeffrey was the VP of sales. Kevin retired first, and then Jeff checked out at age 40. Both of us had been successful real estate investors, so we decided to form our own company. We started out cautiously, investing our own money. Eventually, as we perfected our model, we opened up the investments to family and friends, and finally investors.
MO: Your high tech and military backgrounds contribute to the core values and culture at Meridian Pacific Properties. How have your skills and experience gained in high tech and the military contributed to the foundation of the company?
Kevin & Jeffrey: We run a company based on constant improvement. We believe that both integrity and transparency are critical to the long term successes of a business. We also believe that energy follows focus, and that discipline and hard work are building blocks to any business.
MO: Can you talk about how you started the company? Did you solicit investors or raise the capital you needed in some other way?
Kevin & Jeffrey: We started out with our own funds, and worked to turn the capital as quickly and efficiently as possible. It is very hard to get financing in the beginning. As we expanded and had a solid track record, we were able to apply for traditional credit lines.
MO: Can you tell us why a California company invests in Memphis, TN?
Kevin & Jeffrey: In order to evaluate top investment property markets, our top three considerations were:
Rent Ratio in the median price point = High Returns
Economic Infrastructure = Quality Stock
Market Stability = Capital Preservation
Our inventory (single family median priced homes) is in Memphis because that’s where the numbers work. We extensively analyzed US government data for the 366 largest US metropolitan regions (MSAs). We approached our investing as if we were evaluating a stock – we wanted a 1) quality stock that 2) preserved capital and 3) offered the highest returns.
Most of our investors come from the coasts, NY, CA, Washington DC, and a few from Chicago. So we keep our headquarters, sales and marketing near our clients. On the ground in Memphis, we have our staff that handles renovations, acquisitions, and property management.
MO: How have you created a straightforward metric tool that helps property investors make an informed decision when it comes to assessing a property for investment purposes?
Kevin & Jeffrey: We’ve created a lot of tools for our investors, tools that we wish we had ourselves when we started out investing. One is our property analysis tool on our website http://www.meridianpacficproperties.com. It has been a really effective way to demonstrate to our client that “too good to be true” offers usually leave out key variables (vacancy, maintenance, etc.).
MO: How does it feel to move from a two person start-up, to growing a team, a company, and a culture?
Kevin & Jeffrey: It feels great. We’ve moved from just the two of us, to two offices with 16 employees in both Memphis and San Diego. We almost doubled our sales last year; we expect another banner year in 2012.
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