MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET) announced today that it originated, through MetLife Real Estate Investors, approximately $11.5 billion in commercial real estate loans in 2013. MetLife remains a leader in the commercial mortgage marketplace and the largest lender in the insurance industry, with a portfolio of more than $42 billion in commercial mortgages.

MetLife Real Estate Investors, reorganized in late 2012 to include an asset management capability for institutional investors, also had a strong first full year of operation. The company secured more than $7 billion in commitments from institutional investors.

The company agreed to invest nearly $3 billion in its equity real estate portfolio, including deals with several new joint venture partners in 2013. MetLife’s authorized investment in such properties was $1.9 billion, with the balance provided by other investors. Commercial mortgage lending and equity real estate deals provide MetLife with investment opportunities that match the long-term liabilities the company writes through its insurance products.

Within its international portfolio, MetLife also successfully grew its lending activities in 2013, originating $1.2 billion in the United Kingdom, $500 million in Mexico, $400 million in Japan, and $225 million in Chile.

“MetLife was prolific across a variety of real estate sectors in 2013,” said Robert Merck, senior managing director and global head of real estate investment for MetLife. “We strengthened our position as a leader in commercial mortgage lending both domestically and internationally. In addition, we expanded our activity in the asset management space and anticipate continuing to creating attractive opportunities for institutional investors.”

Strong Commercial Mortgage Lending

MetLife originated a number of high-quality commercial real estate loan transactions with sizes of $100 million and above. Some noteworthy transactions in 2013 included:

  • $500 million participation in a $1 billion first mortgage on 1095 Avenue of the Americas, a Class A office building in midtown Manhattan that serves as MetLife’s headquarters
  • $450 million loan on The Shops at Columbus Circle, a high-end retail center located in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle in Manhattan
  • $360 million first mortgage on The Americana at Brand, a super-regional shopping center in Los Angeles County
  • $320 million senior loan on the Edwardian Hotel Group, collateralized by a portfolio of hotels in the United Kingdom
  • $235 million first mortgage on BG Group Place, a Class A office tower in Houston, Texas
  • $150 million loan on The Mall at Green Hills, a top-quality regional mall located in Nashville, Tenn.
  • $125 million (MXP 1.67 billion) senior loan secured by a cross-collateralized pool of eight retail properties located in various cities across Mexico, including Reynosa, Escobedo, Saltillo and Juarez
  • $114 million (JPY 11.4 billion) senior loan secured by a cross-collateralized pool of six office and two residential properties located in Tokyo, Osaka and Hokkaido, Japan
  • $100 million first mortgage on Mosaic Apartments, a 386-unit, Class A multifamily project in San Jose, Calif.

Asset Management

MetLife’s asset management business secured more than $7 billion in investor commitments in real estate and mortgage loans from partners such as Norges Bank and Sun Trust Bank.

“Our asset management business really hit its stride in 2013,” said Merck. “We believe this is a clear sign our clients are relying on our extensive experience in real estate investing to create opportunities for attractive, long-term returns. We look forward to growing these accounts in 2014 and generating strong returns for our customers, policyholders and shareholders.”

Equity Real Estate Investments

MetLife’s $13.6 billion equity real estate portfolio includes investments in office, apartment, retail, industrial and hotel properties. MetLife’s real estate platform includes origination and asset management offices across seven regional offices in the United States, as well as London, Mexico City, Tokyo and Santiago, Chile.

MetLife agreed to acquire real estate and real estate joint ventures with property values of $2.9 billion during calendar year 2013. The strategy continues to focus on high quality core assets.

Some noteworthy equity real estate transactions in 2013 included:

  • 555 12th Street, a 755,000 square foot office building in Washington, D.C.
  • The Terraces, a 1.07 million square foot office building in Atlanta
  • PNC Center, a 617,000 square foot office building in Chicago
  • Ritz Carlton San Francisco, a 336-room hotel in San Francisco
  • Mosaic Apartments, a 210-unit apartment complex in Tampa, Fla.

About MetLife
MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), through its subsidiaries and affiliates (“MetLife”), is a leading global provider of insurance, annuities and employee benefit programs. MetLife holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit

This news release may contain or incorporate by reference information that includes or is based upon forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements give expectations or forecasts of future events. These statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. They use words such as “anticipate,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe” and other words and terms of similar meaning, or are tied to future periods, in connection with a discussion of future operating or financial performance. In particular, these include statements relating to future actions, prospective services or products, future performance or results of current and anticipated services or products, sales efforts, expenses, the outcome of contingencies such as legal proceedings, trends in operations and financial results.

Any or all forward-looking statements may turn out to be wrong. They can be affected by inaccurate assumptions or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Many such factors will be important in determining the actual future results of MetLife, Inc., its subsidiaries and affiliates. These statements are based on current expectations and the current economic environment. They involve a number of risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. These statements are not guarantees of future performance. Actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Risks, uncertainties, and other factors that might cause such differences include the risks, uncertainties and other factors identified in MetLife, Inc.’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”). These factors include: (1) difficult conditions in the global capital markets; (2) increased volatility and disruption of the capital and credit markets, which may affect our ability to meet liquidity needs and access capital, including through our credit facilities, generate fee income and market-related revenue and finance statutory reserve requirements and may require us to pledge collateral or make payments related to declines in value of specified assets, including assets supporting risks ceded to certain of our captive reinsurers or hedging arrangements associated with those risks; (3) exposure to financial and capital market risks, including as a result of the disruption in Europe; (4) impact of comprehensive financial services regulation reform on us, as a potential non-bank systemically important financial institution, or otherwise; (5) numerous rulemaking initiatives required or permitted by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act which may impact how we conduct our business, including those compelling the liquidation of certain financial institutions; (6) regulatory, legislative or tax changes relating to our insurance, international, or other operations that may affect the cost of, or demand for, our products or services, or increase the cost or administrative burdens of providing benefits to employees; (7) adverse results or other consequences from litigation, arbitration or regulatory investigations; (8) potential liquidity and other risks resulting from our participation in a securities lending program and other transactions; (9) investment losses and defaults, and changes to investment valuations; (10) changes in assumptions related to investment valuations, deferred policy acquisition costs, deferred sales inducements, value of business acquired or goodwill; (11) impairments of goodwill and realized losses or market value impairments to illiquid assets; (12) defaults on our mortgage loans; (13) the defaults or deteriorating credit of other financial institutions that could adversely affect us; (14) economic, political, legal, currency and other risks relating to our international operations, including with respect to fluctuations of exchange rates; (15) downgrades in our claims paying ability, financial strength or credit ratings; (16) a deterioration in the experience of the “closed block” established in connection with the reorganization of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company; (17) availability and effectiveness of reinsurance or indemnification arrangements, as well as any default or failure of counterparties to perform; (18) differences between actual claims experience and underwriting and reserving assumptions; (19) ineffectiveness of risk management policies and procedures; (20) catastrophe losses; (21) increasing cost and limited market capacity for statutory life insurance reserve financings; (22) heightened competition, including with respect to pricing, entry of new competitors, consolidation of distributors, the development of new products by new and existing competitors, and for personnel; (23) exposure to losses related to variable annuity guarantee benefits, including from significant and sustained downturns or extreme volatility in equity markets, reduced interest rates, unanticipated policyholder behavior, mortality or longevity, and the adjustment for nonperformance risk; (24) our ability to address difficulties, unforeseen liabilities, asset impairments, or rating agency actions arising from business acquisitions, including our acquisition of American Life Insurance Company and Delaware American Life Insurance Company, and integrating and managing the growth of such acquired businesses, or arising from dispositions of businesses or legal entity reorganizations; (25) the dilutive impact on our stockholders resulting from the settlement of our outstanding common equity units; (26) regulatory and other restrictions affecting MetLife, Inc.’s ability to pay dividends and repurchase common stock; (27) MetLife, Inc.’s primary reliance, as a holding company, on dividends from its subsidiaries to meet debt payment obligations and the applicable regulatory restrictions on the ability of the subsidiaries to pay such dividends; (28) the possibility that MetLife, Inc.’s Board of Directors may influence the outcome of stockholder votes through the voting provisions of the MetLife Policyholder Trust; (29) changes in accounting standards, practices and/or policies; (30) increased expenses relating to pension and postretirement benefit plans, as well as health care and other employee benefits; (31) inability to protect our intellectual property rights or claims of infringement of the intellectual property rights of others; (32) inability to attract and retain sales representatives; (33) provisions of laws and our incorporation documents may delay, deter or prevent takeovers and corporate combinations involving MetLife; (34) the effects of business disruption or economic contraction due to disasters such as terrorist attacks, cyberattacks, other hostilities, or natural catastrophes, including any related impact on the value of our investment portfolio, our disaster recovery systems, cyber- or other information security systems and management continuity planning; (35) the effectiveness of our programs and practices in avoiding giving our associates incentives to take excessive risks; and (36) other risks and uncertainties described from time to time in MetLife, Inc.’s filings with the SEC.

MetLife, Inc. does not undertake any obligation to publicly correct or update any forward-looking statement if MetLife, Inc. later becomes aware that such statement is not likely to be achieved. Please consult any further disclosures MetLife, Inc. makes on related subjects in reports to the SEC.


Fred Pieretti