Article submitted by Carmen R. Austin, MBA, CCIM, Associate Broker and Retail Specialist for Saurage Rotenberg Commercial Real Estate

Written by Beth Mattson-Teig | September/October 2016

It is no surprise that the demand for industrial space in warehouse, distribution, and fulfillment centers has been soaring along with the explosive growth occurring in e-commerce.

Online sales in the U.S. are expected to reach $523 billion in 2020 – up 56 percent from the $335 billion in 2015, according to a report by Forrester Research Inc. Amid that backdrop, e-commerce users also are proving to have a big impact offline in the industrial real estate market. They have been gobbling up huge blocks of space, fueling new construction, and attracting more institutional and global investors to the market.

E-commerce launched a new generation of mega-sized facilities that can store and process goods more efficiently. As the industry continues to evolve, space demands are shifting once again as firms zero in on “the last mile” – the final leg of the journey in delivering product purchases. E-commerce companies are moving closer to customers to speed delivery.

“We are such a time-sensitive society where people want the stuff they order yesterday,” says William G. Leffew, CCIM, a senior vice president at Bellweather Enterprise in Louisville, Ky.

Read more…

Carmen R. Austin, MBA, CCIM has been a practicing commercial real estate broker since 2001. She is a graduate of the Louisiana State University (LSU) E.J Ourso College of Business and the LSU Flores Masters of Business Administration (MBA) Program with a specialization in Entrepreneurship and Real Estate Finance. Her experience includes past employment as Regional Director of Leasing at Commercial Properties Realty Trust the for-profit arm of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. Carmen’s affiliations include Louisiana REALTORSGreater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors Commercial Investment Division, International Council of Shopping CentersCommercial Real Estate Women,Certified Commercial Investment Member Institute, National Association of REALTORS, and Urban Land Institute. She is also an active volunteer on the Board of Directors for the Baton Rouge GalleryLSU MBA Alumni AssociationJunior Achievement of Baton Rouge, and the Junior League of Baton Rouge. Carmen is a graduate of the Jay W. Levine Leadership Development Academy Class of 2011 and served as the 2010 President of the Louisiana CCIM Chapter. Carmen currently serves on the National CCIM Institute Board of Directors and the CCIM Institute Education Foundation Board of Directors.

Saurage Rotenberg Commercial Real Estate is a member of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber of Commerce (BRAC); the West Baton Rouge Chamber of Commerce; the Baton Rouge Better Business Bureau; the Louisiana Commercial Data Base (LACDB); and the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). Several agents, on an individual basis, are members of the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors® (SIOR), the Certified Commercial Investment Member Institute (CCIM); the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR); and the Greater Baton Rouge Association of REALTORS® Commercial Investment Division (CID).