Strategic Storage Trust Plans IPO, Acquires 4th Canadian Self-Storage Property

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Strategic Storage Trust II Inc. has filed plans for an initial public offering (IPO) of as much as $1.1 billion to raise funds to invest in a portfolio of self-storage facilities and related real estate investments. Formed in January, the company plans to seek status as a real estate investment trust (REIT) specializing in self-storage.

The company is a related but separate entity from Strategic Storage Trust Inc., a publicly registered, non-traded REIT that operates self-storage properties. Strategic Capital Holdings LLC, the sponsor of Strategic Storage Trust Inc., owns 75 percent of the membership interests of Strategic Storage Holdings LLC, which is the sponsor of Strategic Storage Trust II. Like its predecessor, Strategic Storage Trust II will rebrand any storage acquisitions under the SmartStop Self Storage trade name. H. Michael Schwartz serves as president and CEO of both companies.

The IPO is contingent on Strategic Storage Trust II selling a minimum of $1.5 million of its shares in the primary offering, according to the Sept. 4 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company expects to offer 100 million shares at $10 each in the primary offering and 10 million shares at $9.50 each under a distribution reinvestment plan.

Meanwhile, Strategic Storage Trust continues to be aggressive in the North American real estate market, recently acquiring an industrial building in Pickering, Ontario, Canada, for approximately $5.4 million (CAD). The company plans to convert the building into a self-storage facility comprising 91,000 net rentable square feet in 890 units. It will operate as SmartStop Self Storage. The proposed project will also include a new, 73,300-square-foot structure built adjacent to the existing building. The site will feature interior, climate-controlled units along with 3,000 square feet of executive office suites, company officials said.

The conversion is expected to begin sometime during the second quarter of 2014 with an anticipated opening during the fourth quarter. The project will be the company’s second redevelopment effort in Ontario and fourth self-storage location in Canada. "Our first redevelopment project in Mississauga was extremely successful and a perfect example of the many opportunities in the Greater Toronto area," Schwartz said. "This facility offers incredible visibility with 370 feet of freeway frontage."

Earlier this month, Strategic Storage Trust acquired a 45,630-square-foot storage facility in Toms River, N.J., for $5.2 million. The company’s entire portfolio includes more than 100 facilities in 17 states and Canada that are branded as SmartStop Self Storage. The portfolio includes approximately 72,000 self-storage units and 9.5 million square feet of rentable storage space.

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