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Business Observer Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021 1 month ago

Real estate firm launches $100M fund, considers moving HQ to region

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Company says while headquarters is up north, 'a large segment of our employees live in Florida.'

NAPLES — A Pennsylvania commercial real estate firm with properties in at least five sectors and some 200 employees nationwide, is launching a $100 million acquisition fund — to be run out of its new Naples office.

Edgewater Group, based in Paoli, Pennsylvania, outside of Philadelphia, recently acquired office space in Naples, in the Bayfront Office Building. In addition to managing the accounting and marketing side of the forthcoming fund, Edgewater Founding Partner Ketan Vora, who has a residence in Naples, says the firm’s Southwest Florida expansion is “a natural extension” of the firm’s model. That includes distressed advisory, management and value-add investment services in five main sectors: hospitality, retail, office, student housing and residential. “We are in it for the long haul,” Vora says in an interview with the Business Observer. “We buy it, we update it, we stabilize it.”

The firm, founded in 2008 mostly to buy distressed properties in the recession, considers Naples its southeast hub, and Vora says it might eventually replace suburban Philadelphia as its full headquarters. “We have very few employees in Pennsylvania now,” Vora says. “A large segment of our employees live in Florida.”

Edgewater’s new Naples office, on Third Avenue South in the upscale mixed-used Bayfront community, is two blocks from the prominent Fifth Avenue shopping and restaurant district. The firm acquired the 1,100-square-foot office in July under the entity Edgecap Management LLC for $550,000, Collier County property records show. It hired Naples-based architectural firm MHK Architecture & Planning to handle build-out and design, which, according to a statement, “will feature all glass offices and conference rooms reflective of Edgewater’s open and transparent organizational philosophy and culture.”

Edgewater has another office in and in Tallahassee, where it has some student housing properties and hotels. On the west coast of Florida, in 2016 it acquired the Wyvern Hotel in Punta Gorda, Charlotte County. It paid $9.5 million for the property. 

Vora says the $100 million investment fund, which he expects to launch within six months, will be national in scope and also look at properties in the region for acquisition. “We don’t focus on one vertical,” he says. “We look for where we can add value in a given market.”

(This story was updated to reflect the correct locations of Edgewater's offices.) 

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