Welsh Cos. real estate trust delays its IPO

Welsh Property Trust Inc., a real estate investment trust (REIT) formed by Welsh Cos. in Minnetonka, is delaying its initial public offering.

The REIT was expected to debut this week but instead filed a revised prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Commission saying it was dropping the price of common shares being offered to between $16 to $16.50 a share. That's down from $19 to $21 per share that it indicated in its prospectus filed May 21. Also, it plans to increase the number of shares offered to 20,923,077, up from 17,500,000.

The net proceeds from the sale will remain about $315.2 million, it said in the filing Thursday.

Executives did not return calls for comment Thursday. The company plans to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol WLS.

Welsh said previously that it intends to use part of the money that it raises through the offering for acquisitions that would be focused on industrial and office properties in the central United States, including distressed properties.

Welsh said it is reviewing the acquisition of more than $820 million worth of properties and already has purchase agreements for two in Missouri and Ohio.

The REIT currently owns 64 office and industrial properties, 19 of them in Minnesota. It also owns about 44 acres of vacant, developable land.

It expects to continue to manage and handle leasing for its portfolio after the offering.

Welsh Property posted a net loss of $12.6 million on revenue of $121.4 million for 2009, the filing said. It had total assets of $782.2 million and total liabilities of $414.7 million at the end of the year.

Jennifer Bjorhus • 612-673-4683

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