The FORT Podcast: Sean Dalfen – CEO @ Dalfen Industrial – Investing in Industrial RE Across North America

Sean Dalfen is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Dalfen Industrial and leads the firm’s investment committees and management committees across its platforms. Under Sean’s leadership, Dalfen Industrial’s portfolio has grown to over 50 million square feet of industrial properties from coast to coast, making it one of the nation’s largest owners and developers of industrial real estate and a leader in the last-mile sector. Over his career, Sean has transacted on in excess of $10 billion

On this episode, Chris and Sean discuss:

– A deep dive on the state of construction
– Predictions for the DFW market
– Robotics implementation in industrial spaces
– Industrial Outdoor Storage

Listen on:
Apple Podcasts


(00:00:00) Intro

(00:04:25) Selling stocks in May 2022

(00:07:11) The state of construction

(00:14:46) How are you thinking about the next 3 years?

(00:21:36) Leasing

(00:31:43) Predictions for DFW

(00:39:18) Robotics implementation in industrial spaces

(00:43:34) Categorizing leasing activity

(00:45:49) Lending

(00:49:42) Industrial outdoor storage

(00:55:28) The evolving supply chain

(00:57:45) Thoughts on Amazon

(01:01:05) Supply vs. demand

(01:04:01) What needs to be in place right now for you to jump on a deal?


Episode Summary

Dalfen’s journey into the real estate sector is nothing short of illuminating. Navigating through his initial forays into the industry, he delves into early challenges faced, foundational learnings acquired, and the importance of adaptability in the ever-evolving landscape of real estate. These reflections, rooted deeply in his practical experiences, offer listeners a pragmatic lens through which to view the industry’s dynamics.

The intricacies of real estate investments, particularly in industrial spaces, emerge as a focal point of the conversation. Dalfen underscores the balance between supply and demand in diverse regions, emphasizing the significance of location and the increasing demand for warehouses, largely fueled by the exponential growth of e-commerce. This growth, intertwined with modern consumer expectations for swift deliveries, shapes real estate decisions, with infrastructure and proximity to urban centers emerging as pivotal considerations.

As the dialogue progresses, the transformative role of technology in real estate surfaces. From warehouse management to operations and automation, technology’s profound impact becomes evident. Dalfen elucidates how this digital evolution influences real estate investment strategies, stressing the imperative for industry professionals to adopt a forward-thinking approach to harness technology’s potential fully.

Navigating the global tapestry of real estate, Dalfen and Powers explore the interplay of international trade agreements, tariffs, and geopolitical events. In an industry where global trends can significantly impact local decisions, Dalfen’s insights into maneuvering these complexities are invaluable. The emphasis here lies in the need for adaptability, staying abreast of global shifts, and the significance of understanding international market dynamics.

Peering into the future, the duo speculates on emerging real estate trends. Dalfen’s perspective, rooted in his vast experience, shines a spotlight on the continuous ascent of e-commerce. Beyond this, sustainability, green building practices, and environmental considerations emerge as topics of paramount importance, signaling a shift towards a more conscious, responsible approach to real estate development.

Relationship-building, often the bedrock of business success, forms another pivotal segment of the conversation. Dalfen delves into the nuances of negotiations, the essence of fostering trust with stakeholders, and the imperatives of transparency and integrity. These reflections, while offering strategic insights, also underscore the ethos that has been instrumental in Dalfen’s success.

Personal growth, mentorship, and continuous learning emerge as themes towards the latter part of the dialogue. Dalfen’s journey, replete with challenges and triumphs, serves as a testament to the value of hands-on experience, the significance of seeking mentorship, and the imperatives of learning in diverse market scenarios.

In a reflection that underscores the broader societal role of real estate, the conversation touches upon the implications of real estate decisions on communities and urban development. Dalfen and Powers discuss the broader responsibilities that professionals hold, emphasizing the ethical considerations and the transformative role of real estate in community building.

The FORT is produced by Johnny Podcasts

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