“We’ve got a 10-year game plan, and our game plan is specifically this; we want to do more development, mainly in the retail sector,” Crenian told RENX during an interview. “I’m just looking for good deals right now.”
After selling a couple of properties in recent months, ReDev has capital in its coffers and he has a specific plan of what to do with it.
“The money we’re going to use to pay back some of our joint venture partners; our investors that we accumulated over the years, and so that will be No. 1: make sure they get a great return,” he said.
The other part of his plan involves those acquisitions.
“We’re looking at buying either more land or we’re looking at getting another mall, or two malls, or three malls right now. We’ve got offers out on three malls so we’re waiting to hear back,” he said, confirming all three are located in Alberta — home to the majority of ReDev’s holdings.
ReDev partners with high-net worth individuals, family offices and institutions on joint venture opportunities, and assists developers with acquisitions, equity, financing and business expertise. Since 1981, Crenian and ReDev Properties have developed, owned and managed commercial real estate worth more than $2 billion.
Crenian grew up in Swift Current, Sask. He said many of his peers as young men joined a mass migration to Alberta and took up roles in the Alberta real estate industry. He went, too.
“As a result, I feel like Alberta is my home as well,” he said, partially explaining ReDev’s focus in the province though the company is now based in Toronto. “I’m very comfortable with Alberta.
“I’ve seen Alberta boom, bust, boom, bust, boom, bust.”
He said the province is less dependent on oil than most think. (Oil, gas and mining in Alberta now accounts for about 16 per cent of its GDP, according to the provincial government. That’s down from 24 per cent less than five years ago.)
“They do have tech industry that is very exciting. I know they have tried for years and years since the 1980s to get off their reliance on oil,” he said. “Commercially, I’m not worried at all about Alberta.”