Duke Realty Laying Off Hundreds In $26B Prologis Deal


Duke Realty is set to be acquired by Prologis in a $25.6 billion megadeal, but when the Indianapolis-based real estate investment trust’s board voted to sell it to its West Coast competitor, its CEO said so was one of his deepest moments.

“Worst [expletive] Day of my life,” Duke CEO Jim Connor told the Indianapolis Business Journal of informing his employees that the company was being sold, adding that it was the right business decision.

About 300 Duke employees will lose their jobs as a result of the acquisition, the IBJ reported, although the final figure is not yet clear. Many of Duke’s employees have been with the company for 30 years. Duke filed the IBJ story for a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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The REIT told the Indiana Department of Workplace Development this week that it would lay off 120 workers in the state as a result of the move.

“I stood there with a 50th anniversary banner on the front of the building behind me and I spoke to our team – people I know [decades] and people who built this company and did all the incredible hard work,” said Connor. “I had to stand up and tell them the decision was made and it was going to happen.”

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Connor will join Prologis as Vice President. About 40 Duke employees work at Prologis on a permanent or temporary basis, according to IBJ.

“Our employees are all shareholders, so they will see the benefit,” Connor told the IBJ. “We’ve also gone to great lengths to ensure that all of our employees are treated very generously in terms of their severance pay, to the point where nobody has to rush out and look for a job.”

Prologis aggressively pursued Duke, proposing several offers that were rejected before reaching a settlement in June that valued the company at nearly $26 billion, including debt. Duke shareholders will receive 0.475 Prologis shares for each Duke share they own upon closing of the transaction, which is expected to occur in the next quarter. The shareholder vote is scheduled for later this week.

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The company plans to launch its Indianapolis headquarters, Keystone at the Crossing, next year, the IBJ reports.

With the acquisition of Duke, Prologis will add SF165 million in assets, all in the United States, to its global portfolio, which reached SF1 billion last year. Prologis plans to exit one of Duke’s markets but retain 94% of its portfolio.

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