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Franklin Street Properties Corp (NYSEMKT:FSP)
Q4 2019 Earnings Call
Feb 12, 2020, 10:00 a.m. ET

Contents:

  • Prepared Remarks
  • Questions and Answers
  • Call Participants

Prepared Remarks:

Operator

Good day, and welcome to the Franklin Street Properties Corp. Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2019 Results Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] Please note this event is being recorded.

I would now like to turn the conference over to Mr. Scott Carter, General Counsel. Please go ahead.

Scott H. Carter -- Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary

Good morning, and welcome to the Franklin Street Properties fourth quarter and full year 2019 earnings call. With me this morning are George Carter, our Chief Executive Officer; John Demeritt, our Chief Financial Officer; Jeff Carter, President and Chief Investment Officer; and John Donahue, President of FSP Property Management. Also with me this morning are Toby Daley, Executive Vice President of FSP Property Management; and Will Friend, also Executive Vice President of FSP Property Management.

Various remarks that we may make about future expectations, plans and prospects for the company may constitute forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including those discussed in the Risk Factors section of our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019, which is on file with the SEC. In addition, these forward-looking statements represent the company's expectations only as of today, February 12, 2020. While the company may elect to update these forward-looking statements, it specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. Any forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the company's estimates or views as of any date subsequent to today.

At times during this call, we may refer to funds from operations or FFO. A reconciliation of FFO to GAAP net income is contained in yesterday's press release, which is available on the Investor Relations section of our website at www.fspreit.com.

Now I'll turn the call over to John Demeritt. John?

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

Thank you, Scott, and good morning, everyone. On today's call, I'll begin with a very brief overview of our fourth quarter results. And afterward, our CEO, George Carter, will discuss our performance in more detail and provide some of his remarks. John Donahue, our President of the asset management team, will then discuss recent leasing activities. And then Jeff Carter, our President and CIO, will discuss our investment and disposition activities. And after that, we'll be happy to take your questions.

As a reminder, our comments today will refer to our earnings release, supplemental package and 10-K, which were filed with the SEC last night, and as Scott mentioned, can be found on our website.

We reported funds from operations, or FFO, of $26.8 million or $0.25 per share for the fourth quarter of '19 and $97.5 million or $0.91 per share for the full year of 2019.

Turning to our balance sheet. At December 31, 2019 we had about $970 million of unsecured debt outstanding, and our debt service coverage ratio was about 4 times. During Q4 and as of the end of the year, we continued to have no balance drawn on our revolver and $600 million is available. We have no debt maturities until November 30 of '21, and about 95% of our debt is at fixed rates. With our debt stack more termed out and our rates mostly fixed, we believe we've aligned our capital structure with the more long-term value-add type of properties that we have in our markets.

From a liquidity standpoint, we had $600 million available on the revolver as I just said and $9.8 million in cash on our balance sheet, so total liquidity is $609.8 million at year-end.

With that, I'll turn the call over to George. George?

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

Thank you, John. And again, welcome to Franklin Street Properties fourth quarter, full year 2019 earnings call. As John said, our FFO for the fourth quarter and full year 2019 was $0.25 per share and $0.91 per share, respectively. For the full year 2019, we leased a total of approximately 1,417,000 square feet office space in our portfolio of 32 operating and three redevelopment properties, of which 534,000 square feet was with new tenants. Over the last three years we have averaged about 1.5 million square feet of leasing per year or about 15% per year of our approximately 9.9 million square foot property portfolio.

Upcoming existing tenant lease rollover is now expected to average about 780,000 square feet per year for both 2020 and 2021, approximately 7.9% per year of our total office space. While much of our leasing activity over the past three years has been focused on renewing or backfilling existing tenant lease rollover space, in 2020 we will seek to achieve meaningful net new absorption with the objective of increasing economic occupancy and average rental rates for years to come.

At this time, we are giving full year of FFO guidance for 2020 to be in an estimated range of $0.81 per share to $0.87 per share. This guidance includes $26,556 of lease termination fees. If we achieve the positive net new absorption we anticipate in 2020, higher economic occupancies should positively impact FSP's future rental income levels. The longer-term value-add proposition that was such an integral part of the strategy of recasting our property portfolio over the last 10 years is we believe finally at an inflection point.

On commentary about activity in our property portfolio, I will now turn the call over to John Donahue, President of our property management company. John?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Thank you, George. Good morning, everyone. The FSP portfolio, including redevelopment assets, was 86.1% leased at the end of calendar 2019, compared to 86.4% leased as of December, 2018. Total leasing achieved for the full year in 2019 was approximately 1,417,000 square feet, approximately 534,000 square feet was with new tenants which is a record high for new leasing. For the first time in approximately three years, the percentage of expiring leases measured by square feet in our total portfolio for the upcoming year is well below 8%. This sets up a terrific opportunity to make meaningful progress on leased occupancy during the next 12 months, due to a relatively light year of expirations and known departures.

Due to recent progress thus far in Q1, 2020 in regards to renewals, holdovers and lease extensions, there will likely be less than 7% in total tenant expirations during calendar 2020. There is a current pipeline of approximately 400,000 square feet of new prospective tenants along with potential expansions of existing tenants that represent net absorption. Many of the prospective tenants have shortlisted FSP assets and are either in the letter of intent stage or considered strong probability prospects. Thus far, in the first quarter of 2020, we have executed approximately 20% or 80,000 square feet of the potential 400,000 square feet. Barring any surprises, we expect to execute a significant percentage of those new leases during the next three months to six months.

We continue to make progress with gross rents and net rents in the FSP portfolio. In terms of in-place or occupied weighted average rental rate, the portfolio finished the year at $29.88 per square foot compared to $29.01 per square foot at the end of 2018. The weighted average GAAP gross rental rate achieved on leasing activity for the year was $31.78 per square foot. On a net rent basis, the weighted average for total leasing activity was $19.65 per square foot as compared to $18.95 in 2018. We believe the demonstrated progress on net rents along with fewer expirations in the short term and executing longer-term leases, translates to added value in the FSP portfolio.

With that, I will turn it over to Jeff Carter.

Jeffrey B. Carter -- President and Chief Investment Officer

Thank you, John. Good morning, everyone. Franklin Street Properties owns high-quality office properties in amenity rich locations within the US Sunbelt, Mountain West, as well as several opportunistic markets. Job growth statistics, population growth trends, cost of living data and quality of life information with respect to the Sunbelt and Mountain West regions continue to demonstrate positive potential for future upside performance were our largest markets reside. By focusing on delivering our customers excellent service in compelling locations, we believe that our portfolio is well positioned to generate the conditions for value creation and is indeed as George referenced poised to experience an inflection point.

FSP's regional focus has continued to show encouraging signs relative to the US national office market. More specifically, data from the US Census Bureau, continues to show that the South and the West regions of the country are enjoying the strongest population and job market growth.

On the disposition and asset recycling front, Franklin Street's decision several years ago to substantially refocus our portfolio into several US Sunbelt and Mountain West and opportunistic markets as resulted in higher quality, more infill oriented properties that are attaining higher rental rates and longer lease term on average in our past portfolio. FSP worked to reshape our portfolio by completing dispositions and/or mortgage repayments of over $351 million since 2014. Presently, the investment sales market nationally remains open and liquid with positive pricing for quality assets and quality locations. At FSP, we currently view our directly owned portfolio as broadly possessing upside potential that we are striving to capture. We will keep the market posted though and up to date as appropriate, should circumstances warrant.

On the acquisition front, we continue to track all suitable investment opportunities within our markets. Generally though, we continue to see stronger IRR potential organically on value-add efforts within our existing portfolio than externally through new purchases. We will continue our efforts though to identify infill and urban properties within our markets that possess the ability to add value over the short to intermediate term.

And with that, we thank you for listening to our earnings conference call today. And now at this time, we'd like to open up the call for any questions. Operator?

Questions and Answers:

Operator

We will now begin the question-and-answer session. [Operator Instructions] The first question comes from Dave Rodgers of Baird. Please go ahead.

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

Yeah, good morning everyone. John Donahue, we wanted to start with you on the 400,000 square feet of backlog of leasing activity that you talked about, and I think you mentioned about 80,000 of that was already executed. Can you give us an update on the 80 and kind of where that is? And then can you also dovetail the other 400 and how that might impact the lease-up of the redevelopment assets, would you expect to kind of stabilize by the end of this year?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Sure. Good morning, Dave. I'll start off with the 80,000 square feet and that's a combination of new leasing and expansions, extensions. It is evenly distributed across the portfolio, with occupancies across the year. No significant spike in any given quarter, but we believe that those will start immediately, some of it in the first quarter and then spread out among the year.

And then in terms of the entire 400,000 square feet, as you recall we had forecasted that we would anticipate almost 200,000 square feet of new deals in the fourth quarter and we were able to execute about half of those and we haven't lost the balance of those prospects, many of them have just drifted into 2020 and we're optimistic that we'll have a high batting average and land, a good percentage of those over the next three months to six months. We are anticipating that because those deals have been delayed a bit that a large percentage will take occupancy in the back half of the year toward the end of the year. So there could be some impact -- some meaningful impact as the year goes on.

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

And I guess maybe just addressing the redevelopment assets particularly that were -- a bulk of that demand is today?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

No, I wouldn't characterize as the bulk being in the redevelopment portfolio. We have about 200,000 square feet of remaining vacancy in the three redevelopment properties. So that's a relatively small portion compared to the entire vacancy in the portfolio. We do have a few strong prospects at Forest Park in Charlotte, we can't fit all three prospects. So we're hoping to land one or two of those and get that property stabilized over the next couple of quarters. We have two strong prospects in Minneapolis, one in particular that we've been working with from nine months to 12 months, that has been in an acquisition and not certain of how much space they need, we're very anxious to get that deal done and we believe that we'll be able to do so shortly. And so that will be a nice step in getting the top two floors of Marquette multi-tenanted, which has been our focus here over the last couple of quarters. And then last, but not least at Blue Lagoon, we are projecting the building to be delivered in the fourth quarter and Lennar to take occupancy then, the garage should be done by then. And we're talking with a group of smaller prospects that we hope will ramp up here over the next quarter or two as they're looking at occupancies most likely either at the very end of the year or into the first quarter of 2021.

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

Great, thanks for that color. John Demeritt, on the guidance, can you reiterate for me, what George as said, I missed it I apologize. In terms of lease termination fee income in the guidance for this year and the timing of that? And then the second component of the guidance question, can you talk about how much of the FFO, especially this kind of back half ramp from a '19 set number in the first quarter, how much of that is speculative leasing versus how much of that do you already know today?

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

I think on the back half of that question I probably need to refer to John Donahue on that, but in the front half as George said we have $26,556 of termination fee income in the guidance and that's all in the first quarter. That's based on what was known in the portfolio as of today. I think we have sort of lighter lease maturities this year and next. So I think that reduces the likelihood of significant term -- termination fees, but we'll look at this quarterly as we go through the year and talk about guidance.

The back half of the year does have more leasing assumptions in it, but John maybe you can talk a little bit more about that.

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Sure. Dave, I think the way to look at this is that we're anticipating that we'll have a ramp up of occupancy and FFO over each successive quarter during 2020. There are a handful of contributing factors to consider, including executed leases that will take occupancy during the year approximately 370,000 square feet or so such as Lennar, and those will be contributing as the year goes on. We have recently executed holdovers, extensions, and exercised options such as Jones Day that will now last throughout 2020 or into 2021. And then we have recent early renewals such as Somerset executed in the last half of 2019, with longer-term -- lease terms at higher rents that will contribute with FFO pickups in 2020. And then, last but not least, the pipeline of 400,000 square feet of prospects that I mentioned earlier. So what we're expecting, barring any surprises, is that we will see success of ramp-up in each quarter.

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

Great, thanks for that. Last question for me, George. As you kind of set the strategy going forward, a lot of vacancy to fill up, a lot of TILC dollars to spend, how comfortable are you kind of filling up the portfolio on your own versus how do you weigh that again, maybe selling some of the vacancy and just getting focused on the assets that you want to own long-term?

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

I think as Jeff said, Dave, right now we think the portfolio is -- got a lot of value-add potential including the vacant -- the vacancy and we would want to add that value-add potential before considering dispositions. But when that value-add is completed, dispositions and repurposing those funds into acquisitions that we think have a lot more value creation to do and can be very accretive will definitely be done, but we are in almost every property that we see meaningful vacancy and now we believe the opportunity to add value is so much greater over the near and intermediate term than simply selling that vacancy now at its price.

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

Thank you all for the time.

Operator

The next question comes from Rob Stevenson of Janney. Please go ahead.

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

Good morning, guys. When I take a look at the slide deck 8 or excuse me, 9 of the supplemental, you guys lay out the tenant improvement leasing commissions and the non-investment capex for '19 and '20. If I look at that and I think about 2020, you know '19 was roughly $71 million, '18 was roughly $53 million, $54 million. Where are you guys expecting those three big sort of costs on the tenant improvement leasing commissions and non-investment capex to come in closer to the higher level of '19 or closer to '18 for 2020?

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

This is John Demeritt. I'll try to answer that question. Capital expenditure is a pretty fluid and really based on a lot of leasing assumptions, but we do have a lot of leasing that we intend to do this year. So I think we would be closer to what we saw in '19 than '18.

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

Okay. And then straight line rent in 2020. If I look at '19 it was roughly just under $9 million negative in '18 it was slight positive, how should we be thinking about that for 2020?

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

Actually I don't have a number I can quote you on that one on the guidance, but I would expect it's going to be higher based on leases that would come online. I think John mentioned, we've got 378,000 square feet of leasing, which you can see on the NAV table on page 28 of deck. Those are leases that are signed, they didn't come online and usually they start with a few months of free rent. So the straight line rent number should pick up this year.

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

Okay. And then can you talk about where you are on the US government leases. I think there is a number of them that sort of have remaining lease term of call it a year or so or less, it seems like that given the current administration that there has been sort of lags in terms of how long it takes to get formal leases signed back and for the whole process to be completed, are any of those move-outs at this point incremental move-outs, or you expecting them all to renew and sort of what's the timetable on those?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Hey, Rob, it's John Donahue. I'll give you the big picture and I might ask Will Friend to give you new color if you need it. When you look at page 19 of the supplemental, we give you the expiration dates and square footage of the US government leases and we do still expect those near-term expirations to be vacates at some point. However, I would say that a significant one that was scheduled to expire, downsize this year is going to be a holdover throughout the rest of the year and into next year. So we'll give you an update next quarter exactly how that turns out, but in our -- in our projections right now the IRS is likely to stay throughout the rest of the year, and that's between 60,000 square feet and 70,000 square feet of holdover, but the others really are expected to vacate at some point over the short term and again we'll give you an update next quarter.

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

Okay. And what about Randstad's mid next year expiration, where are you guys on that one?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

There's nothing to report right now. They have been off -- off and on again, we've engaging so because of their staggered expirations, we believe that they will be looking for at least a mid-term kind of a renewal, but too early to tell.

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

Okay. All right, thanks guys appreciate it.

Operator

Our next question comes from John Guinee of Stifel. Please go ahead.

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

Okay, great. Just a very nice quarter and nice guidance, thanks. On page 8, you have $4.4 million as non-reoccurring, what is that? Is that a big lease term fee?

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

What page -- page 8 -- it's John Demeritt, John, page 8 of what?

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

Hey John, under non-reoccurring NOI --.

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

Same-store. Yeah, that's the termination fees John.

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

And which fee is that? Which tenant is that?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

[Speech Overlap] I'm sorry, John, it's John Donahue. The lion's share of that number in calendar 2019 was ADS. That was a downsizing they bought out -- set up their rent for a portion of their space, they are still a tenant there.

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

Okay. And then Northrop Grumman moved out of Chantilly, what's the plan there? And big picture on Northrop Grumman, do you know what's going on in there -- in their minds as they're also giving back 254,000 square feet at [Indecipherable] and Brandywine Realty asset?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

It's John Donahue, again, John. So Northrop did vacate that space. That is a market that has quite a few government contract vendors and we are seeing activity in that field, that sector. We do have one strong prospect for between 50% and 75% of the building that we are working with and waiting for a government decision on the use of that property. I'm not aware of all of Northrop Grumman's contractions and consolidations in the market, but we have heard about them.

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

Right. And then, I guess big picture question, when you look at your guidance right now, you're at 86% leased 83% occupied in the entire portfolio, per page 16. What's your -- what's your model say for year-end '20, where will you be as a percentage leased and percentage occupied on the roughly 9.9 million square foot portfolio?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

I'll speak in terms of the entire portfolio John, including the redevelopment properties. We're expecting lease commencements to really ramp-up toward the end of the year. So we would expect those economic occupancies to be in the -- in the range of 85% give or take, that really depends on us being able to work harmoniously with the tenants to get them in on time. So that could fluctuate between early Q4 and then into Q1 of 2021. But I'd say that the occupancy will be in that 85% range and we hope even better.

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

Okay. I mean, essentially if you just take your redevelopment properties that 370,000 square feet and you subtract out Chantilly, Northrop Grumman that gets you there to 85, but -- OK, thanks a lot.

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

You're welcome.

Operator

[Operator Instructions] The next question comes from John Kim of BMO Capital Markets. Please go ahead.

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

Thank you. I was wondering, can you just remind us how long it takes typically on new leases for leases that are signed to take physical occupancy?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Hey, John, it's John Donahue. So the broad brush answer to that is that the smaller the tenant, typically it's a faster delivery. For example, we've signed a handful of leases here in early 2020, less than 5,000 square feet and some of those tenants are going to take occupancy within 30 days and some of those are going to take occupancy within three months, four months. So the smaller the tenant, the faster the occupancy. When you're talking about prospects between 100,000 square feet and 200,000 square feet such as Lennar that could be 12 months, could be 24 months kind of depends on the type of space and what needs to be done. And then the answer for the prospects in between anywhere from 5,000 square feet up to 100,000 square feet, it's really a wide range depending on the quality and readiness of the space in terms of what they want and when their existing lease expires and when they want to get in. So in average for our portfolio is probably just under 12 months somewhere in the six month to 12 months range as an average, that's a rough estimate.

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

Okay. So I mean -- I realize the leasing pipeline is healthy today, I'm just wondering, a quarter from now are we going to get a better sense of whether or not, you're going to be able to hit your occupancy target for the year?

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

I would expect so.

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

We certainly hope that a lot of this will be happening between now and the next time we speak with you. But yes, we'll have a clearer picture as every month rolls by.

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

Okay. And then maybe a question for John Demeritt the modest termination fees that are in guidance, typically the last couple of years the lease termination fees has averaged $7 million per year. Can you just remind us, is this typical of how you provide guidance only on what you foresee today or do you think this is actually what you're going to -- recognize during 2020?

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

Well when we prepare guidance we consider a number of things a probability of what we think might happen when we come up with it. If you look at the last two years John, there were pretty significant, but there were some fairly significant ones in there. Burger King in 2018, and we have one other fairly substantial one. And this past year ADS was an unusual one as well. And when we look at guidance for 2020, we look at what we actually have, which is what the number that George quoted, but just generally with the sort of lighter lease maturities this year and next I thought that it reduce the likelihood of significant termination fees, but we'll look at this quarterly and we'll see -- if we see something happening -- if a tenant triggers something like that we'll include in guidance when we update each quarter.

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

In your history, did termination fees typically happen toward end of lease?

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Typically it's last year or two before the end of the lease, tenant might have a termination fee option that they execute and then we'll start to record fees that we earn from that through the period of the end of the lease. That's typically how it works.

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

I got it. Thank you.

Operator

Showing no further questions at this time. We will conclude our question-and-answer session. I would like to turn the conference back over to Mr. George Carter for any closing remarks.

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

Thank you everyone for tuning into our earnings call. I appreciate it very much and look forward to speaking with you next quarter. Thank you.

Operator

[Operator Closing Remarks]

Duration: 34 minutes

Call participants:

Scott H. Carter -- Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary

John G. Demeritt -- Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

George J. Carter -- Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board

John F. Donahue -- President of FSP Property Management & Executive Vice President

Jeffrey B. Carter -- President and Chief Investment Officer

Dave Rodgers -- RW Baird -- Analyst

Robert Stevenson -- Janney -- Analyst

John W. Guinee -- Stifel, Nicholas & Company -- Analyst

John P. Kim -- BMO Capital Markets -- Analyst

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