Aligned Closes $1 Billion Credit Facility and First-ever U.S. Data Center Sustainability-linked Financing

Dallas-based data center provider Aligned announced completion of a $1 billion senior secured credit facility that is the first U.S. data center sustainability-linked financing. The facility is one of the largest private debt raises in data center history, consisting of a $650 million term loan, a $100 million delayed draw term loan and a $250 million revolving credit facility. Aligned engaged TD Securities as the administrative and collateral agent, Goldman Sachs Lending Partners LLC as the syndication agent and ING Capital LLC as the sustainability structuring agent. TD Securities, Goldman Sachs Bank USA, Citizens Bank, N.A., Deutsche Bank AG, New York Branch and Nomura Securities International, Inc. served as joint bookrunners and joint lead arrangers for the facility. “Aligned’s latest sustainability-linked financing accelerates our goal to set a best-in-class example for the data center industry with respect to environmentally and socially sustainable growth,” said Anubhav Raj, CFO, Aligned. “Sustainable practices and principles permeate every facet of Aligned’s organization; aligning these initiatives with our financing further demonstrates an industry-leading commitment to environmental stewardship.” “As experts in sustainable finance, ING identified Aligned’s potential early on as a leader committed to solving sustainability challenges associated with data center infrastructure,” said Pim Rothweiler, regional head for technology, media and telecom, ING Americas. “Following the company’s rapid growth over the last few years, ING was able to bring its deep expertise in the sector and sustainable finance to be named the sustainability coordinator for this landmark deal, a first of its kind. We look forward to working with Aligned in the future as it continues to meet its sustainability targets.” The first-of-its-kind facility in the U.S. data center sector provides Aligned with additional capital to accelerate corporate, customer and community-related sustainability initiatives as well as short and long-term growth objectives. Aligned’s sustainability-linked financing is tied to the company’s core environmental, social and governance (ESG) objectives, and key performance indicators (KPIs). Earlier this year, Aligned elevated its commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability by matching 100 percent of the IT loads across its data center portfolio with certified renewable energy. The company was also named a 2020 Green Lease Leader by the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Alliance and the Institute for Market Transformation. Aligned’s Delta3 cooling technology utilizes up to 80 percent less energy and 85 percent less water, significantly reducing environmental impact and allowing customers to expand on demand without stranding capacity, which also improves sustainability. “I couldn’t be prouder of our team’s achievements and operational strength, culminating in an ability to continue championing a slew of firsts for the data center industry,” said Andrew Schaap, CEO, Aligned. “That sentiment is recognized and echoed in this latest and unprecedented round of financing, which provides Aligned the ability to keep expanding our data center portfolio. This includes land acquisition in key U.S. and international regions to address the heightened data center demand of our marquee clients, as well as expediting the expansion of existing data center campuses.”

WeWork Names Veteran Real Estate Executive as New Chief

WeWork, the troubled operator of shared office space, has named Sandeep Mathrani, a senior executive at the commercial real estate company Brookfield Properties, as its new chief executive. Mr. Mathrani, whose appointment was announced on Saturday, replaces Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham, the co-chief executives. Mr. Minson and Mr. Gunningham took over in September from Adam Neumann, the WeWork co-founder whose growth-at-all-costs strategy brought the company to the brink of financial collapse last year. In a statement, Mr. Mathrani said WeWork had “redefined how people and companies approach work with an innovative platform, exceptionally talented team and significant potential if we stick to our shared values and maintain our members-first focus.” Click to read more at www.nytimes.com.

Agency Seeking Executive Director

The Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) is hiring a new Executive Director. Our long-serving Executive Director, Douglas Oldmixon, is retiring at the end of March 2020. The Executive Director serves as the agency leader for both TREC and for the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board (TALCB), and is responsible for organizational culture and day-to-day operations of the agency. This includes managing staff and agency resources, overseeing the annual budget, and developing and implementing a strategic plan in collaboration with TREC and TALCB policymakers appointed by the Governor. Together TREC and TALCB oversee the providers of real estate brokerage, appraisals, property inspections, home warranties, right-of-way services, and timeshare projects. The agency provides licensing, education, and complaint investigation services, as well as regulation and enforcement of state and federal laws and rules that govern each of these areas of service to Texas consumers. Click to read more to see the full job posting.

Howard Hughes Corp. Wraps Houston Build-to-Suit Development Deal

The Howard Hughes Corp. will develop a Class A office building for Alight Solutions near Houston in The Woodlands. Alight, a technology-enabled health, wealth and human capital management solutions provider, will occupy the 180,000-square-foot property under a long-term lease agreement. HHC will erect Alight’s new four-story office building at 8770 New Trails Drive within The Woodlands’ Research Forest technology corridor. The build-to-suit deal paves the way for Alight’s relocation from its current home at 9500 Lakeside Blvd., which is also located within the Research Forest. Click to read more at www.cpexecutive.com.

Bob Rowling on PGA Project: “There’s Not Going to Be Anything Like It.”

The dream team behind the new PGA headquarters resort gathered in Frisco last night to give an update on the 600-acre development. The invite-only event featured three discussions moderated by Dave Marr III of SirusXM’s PGA Tour Radio. Among the featured speakers: PGA of America CEO Seth Waugh, golf course architects Gil Hanse and Beau Welling, World Golf Hall of Famer Lee Trevino (who was uproariously funny) and his mentor Bill Eschenbrenner, and Bob Rowling, chairman and CEO of TRT Holdings, which owns Omni Hotels. Click to read more at www.dmagazine.com.

West Houston Office Building Changes Hands

Hartman Income REIT has purchased Ashford on the Bayou, a five-story office building in west Houston near the Energy Corridor. Built in 1983, the renovated property is 55 percent leased. HFF marketed the property for the seller, Los Angeles-based RPD Catalyst, and arranged a five-year, fixed-rate acquisition loan with RGA Reinsurance Co. for the buyer. Terms were not disclosed. The 126,811-square-foot building is situated on 2.5 acres at 1001 S. Dairy Ashford, south of Buffalo Bayou. The property has an attached seven-story, 467-space parking garage and borders Terry Hershey Park. Click to read more at www.houstonchronicle.com.