SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549
|☐||REGISTRATION STATEMENT PURSUANT TO SECTION 12(b) or (g) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
|☒||ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022
|☐||TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
|☐||SHELL COMPANY REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
Commission file number: 001-35505
Brookfield Property Partners L.P.
|(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)|
|(Translation of Registrant’s name into English)|
|(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)|
|73 Front Street, 5th Floor, Hamilton, HM 12 Bermuda|
(Address of principal executive office)
Bryan K. Davis
Brookfield Property Partners L.P.
73 Front Street, 5th Floor
Hamilton, HM 12, Bermuda
|(Name, Telephone, Email and/or Facsimile number and Address of Company Contact Person)|
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act.
|Title of each class|| ||Trading Symbol(s)||Name of each exchange on which registered|
|6.50% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 1||BPYPP||Nasdaq Stock Market|
|6.375% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 2||BPYPO||Nasdaq Stock Market|
|5.750% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 3||BPYPN||Nasdaq Stock Market|
|6.25% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Units, Series 1|
Nasdaq Stock Market / Toronto Stock Exchange
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act.
Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act.
Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or common stock as of the close of the period covered by the annual report: As of December 31, 2022, there were outstanding 7,360,000 6.50% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 1, 10,000,000 6.375% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 2, 11,500,000 5.750% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 3, and 26,844,556 6.25% Class A Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Units, Series 1.
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.
If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files).
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer”, “accelerated filer”, and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer ¨
Accelerated filer ¨
Non-accelerated Filer x
Emerging growth company ☐
If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report. ¨
If securities are registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act, indicate by check mark whether the financial statements of the registrant included in the filing reflect the correction of an error to previously issued financial statements. ¨
Indicate by check mark whether any of those error corrections are restatements that required a recovery analysis of incentive-based compensation received by any of the registrant’s executive officers during the relevant recovery period pursuant to §240.10D-1(b). ¨
Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing:
U.S. GAAP ¨
International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board
If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question, indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow.
If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).
Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION AND USE OF CERTAIN TERMS
We have prepared this Form 20-F using a number of conventions, which you should consider when reading the information contained herein. Unless otherwise indicated or the context otherwise requires, in this Form 20-F:
•all operating and other statistical information is presented as if we own 100% of each property in our portfolio, regardless of whether we own all of the interests in each property; and
•all information on financial results is presented in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”) as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (“IASB”), other than certain non-IFRS financial measures which are defined under “Use of Non-IFRS Measures” below.
In this Form 20-F, unless the context suggests otherwise, references to “we”, “us” and “our” are to Brookfield Property Partners L.P., the Property Partnership, the Holding Entities and the operating entities, each as defined below, taken together on a consolidated basis. Unless the context suggests otherwise, in this Form 20-F references to:
•“AO LTIP Units” are to the BPY AO LTIP Units of the Property Partnership;
•“Asset Management Company” are to Brookfield Asset Management ULC, which is owned 75%, directly and indirectly, by Brookfield Corporation and 25% by Brookfield Asset Management;
•“assets under management” are to assets managed by us or by Brookfield on behalf of our third-party investors, as well as our own assets, and also include capital commitments that have not yet been drawn. Our calculation of assets under management may differ from that employed by other asset managers and, as a result, this measure may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other asset managers;
•“BN” are to Brookfield Corporation;
•“BPYU” are to Brookfield Properties Retail Holding LLC, formerly known as Brookfield Property REIT Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of our company;
•“BPYU Units” are to the shares of Class A Stock of BPYU;
•“BPY General Partner” are to the general partner of our company, which is Brookfield Property Partners Limited, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield Corporation;
•“Brookfield” are to Brookfield Corporation (formerly Brookfield Asset Management Inc.) and any subsidiary of Brookfield Corporation, other than us and, unless the context otherwise requires, includes Brookfield Asset Management;
•“Brookfield Asset Management” or “BAM” or “the Manager” are to Brookfield Asset Management Ltd.;
•“Class A Preferred Unitholder” are to the third-party holder of the Class A Preferred Units;
•“Class A Preferred Units” are to the Class A preferred limited partnership units of the Property Partnership, Series 1, 2 and 3, that were exchangeable for LP Units of our company pursuant to the Preferred Unit Exchange Mechanism;
•“commercial property” or “commercial properties” are to commercial and other real property that generates or has the potential to generate income, including office, retail, multifamily, logistics, hospitality, triple net lease, manufactured housing, mixed-use and student housing, but does not include, among other things, residential land development, home building, construction, real estate advisory and other similar operations or services;
•“fully-exchanged basis” assume the exchange of certain issued and outstanding securities that are exchangeable into LP Units, including the exchange of the issued and outstanding Redemption-Exchange Units in accordance with the Redemption-Exchange Mechanism;
•“FV LTIP Units” are to the FV LTIP Units of the Property Partnership;
•“Guarantee” means the subordinated guarantee given by the Guarantors with respect to the New LP Preferred Units and certain related obligations;
•“Guarantors” means our partnership, the Property Partnership, Brookfield BPY Holdings Inc., Brookfield BPY Retail Holdings II Inc., BPY Bermuda Holdings Limited, BPY Bermuda Holdings II Limited, BPY Bermuda Holdings IV Limited, BPY Bermuda Holdings V Limited and BPY Bermuda Holdings VI Limited;
•“Holding Entities” are to the primary holding subsidiaries of the Property Partnership, from time to time, through which it indirectly holds all of our interests in our operating entities;
•“LP Units” are to the non-voting limited partnership units of our company, other than Preferred Units;
•“Master Services Agreement” are to the third amended and restated master services agreement among the Service Recipients, the Service Providers, and certain other subsidiaries of Brookfield who are parties thereto, as may be amended from time to time;
•“New LP” means Brookfield Property Preferred L.P.;
•“New LP General Partner” are to the general partner of New LP, which is the Property Partnership, whose managing general partners is BPY, whose general partner is Brookfield Property Partners Limited, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield Corporation;
•“New LP Preferred Units” are to the Class A Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Units, Series 1 of Brookfield Property Preferred L.P.;
•“New LP Preferred Unitholders” are to the holders of New LP Preferred Units;
•“operating entities” are to the entities in which the Holding Entities hold interests and that directly or indirectly hold our real estate assets or that perform real estate management services for our real estate assets other than entities in which the Holding Entities hold interests for investment purposes only of less than 5% of the equity securities;
•“our business” are to our business of owning, operating and investing in commercial property, both directly and through our operating entities;
•“our company”, “BPY” or “our partnership” are to Brookfield Property Partners L.P., a Bermuda exempted limited partnership;
•“our limited partnership agreement” are to the second amended and restated limited partnership agreement of our company;
•“our portfolio” are to the commercial property assets in our Core Office, Core Retail and LP Investments segments, as applicable;
•“our preferred unitholders” are to the holders of Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units;
•“our units” are to the non-voting limited partnership units in our company, including LP Units and Preferred Units and references to “our unitholders” are to the holders of our units. References to “Unitholders” are to holders of general partnership units of our partnership (“GP Units”), LP Units, Redemption-Exchange Units, special limited partnership units of the Property Partnership (“Special LP Units”), AO LTIP Units and FV LTIP Units;
•“Preferred Units” or “Preferred Equity Units” are to the preferred limited partnership units in the capital of BPY, currently consisting of the Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 1 (“Preferred Units, Series 1”), the Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 2 (“Preferred Units, Series 2”), and the Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 3 (“Preferred Units, Series 3”);
•“Preferred Unit Exchange Mechanism” are to the mechanism by which the Class A Preferred Unitholder may exchange the Class A Preferred Units, as more fully described in Item 10.B. “Additional Information - Memorandum and Articles of Association - Description of the Property Partnership Limited Partnership Agreement - Preferred Unit-Exchange Mechanism”;
•“Preferred Unitholders” are to the holders of Preferred Units;
•“Privatization” means the acquisition by Brookfield Corporation on July 26, 2021 of all LP Units and limited partnership units of Brookfield Office Properties Exchange LP (“Exchange LP”) Units that it did not previously own;
•“Property Partnership” or the “Operating Partnership” are to Brookfield Property L.P., a Bermuda exempted limited partnership;
•“Property Partnership Preferred Units” are to the preferred limited partnership units of the Property Partnership, currently consisting of the Class A Preferred Units and the Class A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Units, Series 5, 6 and 7;
•“Property Special LP” are to Brookfield Property Special L.P., an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of the Asset Management Company, which is the sole special limited partner of the Property Partnership;
•“Redemption-Exchange Mechanism” are to the mechanism by which Brookfield may request redemption of its Redemption-Exchange Units in whole or in part in exchange for cash, subject to the right of our company to acquire such interests (in lieu of such redemption) in exchange for LP Units of our company, as more fully described in Item 10.B. “Additional Information - Memorandum and Articles of Association - Description of the Property Partnership Limited Partnership Agreement - Redemption-Exchange Mechanism”;
•“Redemption-Exchange Units” or “Redeemable/Exchangeable Partnership Units” are to the non-voting limited partnership interests in the Property Partnership that are redeemable for cash, subject to the right of our company to acquire such interests (in lieu of such redemption) in exchange for LP Units of our company, pursuant to the Redemption-Exchange Mechanism;
•“Service Providers” are to the subsidiaries of Brookfield Asset Management that provide services to us pursuant to our Master Services Agreement, and unless the context otherwise requires, any other affiliate of Brookfield that is appointed from time to time to act as a service provider pursuant to our Master Services Agreement or to whom any Service Provider has subcontracted for the provision of such services;
•“Service Recipients” are to our company, the Property Partnership, the Holding Entities and, at the option of the Holding Entities, any wholly-owned subsidiary of a Holding Entity excluding any operating entity; and
•“Spin-off” are to the special dividend of LP Units by Brookfield Corporation on April 15, 2013 as described under Item 4.A. “Information on the Company - History and Development of the Company”.
The financial information contained in this Form 20-F is presented in U.S. Dollars and, unless otherwise indicated, has been prepared in accordance with IFRS as issued by the IASB. Amounts in “$” are to U.S. Dollars and amounts in Canadian Dollars (“C$”), Australian Dollars (“A$”), British Pounds (“£”), Euros (“€”), Brazilian Reais (“R$”), Indian Rupees (“₨”), Chinese Yuan (“C¥”), South Korean Won (“₩”) and United Arab Emirates Dirham (“AED”) are identified where applicable.
Use of Non-IFRS Measures
To measure our performance, we focus on net operating income (“NOI”), funds from operations (“FFO”), Company FFO (“CFFO”) and equity attributable to Unitholders. These performance metrics do not have standardized meanings prescribed by IFRS as issued by the IASB and therefore may differ from similar metrics used by other companies. We define each of these measures as described under Item 5.A. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects - Non-IFRS Financial Measures”.
Under Item 5.A. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects - Operating Results - Reconciliation of Non-IFRS Measures”, we provide a reconciliation to net income (loss) for the periods presented. We urge you to review the IFRS financial measures in this Form 20-F, including the financial statements, the notes thereto and the other financial information contained herein, and not to rely on any single financial measure to evaluate our company.
SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This Form 20-F contains “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable securities laws and regulations. Forward-looking statements include statements that are predictive in nature, depend upon or refer to future events or conditions, include statements regarding our operations, business, financial condition, expected financial results, performance, prospects, opportunities, priorities, targets, goals, ongoing objectives, strategies and outlook, as well as the outlook for North American and international economies for the current fiscal year and subsequent periods, and include words such as “expects”, “anticipates”, “plans”, “believes”, “estimates”, “seeks”, “intends”, “targets”, “projects”, “forecasts”, “likely”, or negative versions thereof and other similar expressions, or future or conditional verbs such as “may”, “will”, “should”, “would” and “could”.
Although we believe that our anticipated future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements and information are based upon reasonable assumptions and expectations, the reader should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements and information because they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are beyond our control, which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from anticipated future results, performance or achievement expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements and information.
Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated or implied by forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: risks incidental to the ownership and operation of real estate properties including local real estate conditions; the impact or unanticipated impact of general economic, political and market factors in the countries in which we do business; the ability to enter into new leases or renew leases on favorable terms; business competition; dependence on tenants’ financial condition; the use of debt to finance our business; the behavior of financial markets, including fluctuations in interest and foreign exchanges rates; uncertainties of real estate development or redevelopment; global equity and capital markets and the availability of equity and debt financing and refinancing within these markets; risks relating to our insurance coverage; risks relating to trends in the office real estate industry including employee work-from-home arrangements; the possible impact of international conflicts and other developments including terrorist acts; potential environmental liabilities; changes in tax laws and other tax related risks; dependence on management personnel; illiquidity of investments; the ability to complete and effectively integrate acquisitions into existing operations and the ability to attain expected benefits therefrom; operational and reputational risks; risks related to climate change; catastrophic events, such as earthquakes, hurricanes or pandemics/epidemics; and other risks and factors detailed from time to time in our documents filed with the securities regulators in Canada and the United States, as applicable.
We caution that the foregoing list of important factors that may affect future results is not exhaustive. When relying on our forward-looking statements or information, investors and others should carefully consider the foregoing factors and other uncertainties and potential events. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements or information, whether written or oral, that may be as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
ITEM 1. IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT, AND ADVISERS
ITEM 2. OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE
ITEM 3. KEY INFORMATION
3.B. CAPITALIZATION AND INDEBTEDNESS
3.C. REASONS FOR THE OFFER AND USE OF PROCEEDS
3.D. RISK FACTORS
The following summarizes some, but not all, of the risks provided below. You should carefully consider the following factors in addition to the other information set forth in this Form 20-F. If any of the following risks actually occur, our business, financial condition and results of operations and the value of our units and the New LP Preferred Units would likely suffer.
Risks Relating to Our Business
•Risks relating to the risks incidental to the ownership and operation of real estate assets.
•Risks relating to changes in our credit rating, current and future indebtedness, refinancing risks and compliance with restrictive covenants.
•Risks relating to reliance on significant tenants and tenant defaults, bankruptcies or insolvencies.
•Risks relating to our ability to renew or enter into new leases with tenants for space that is subject to expiring leases.
•Risks relating to force majeure events, uninsurable losses and higher insurance premiums.
•Risks relating to trends in the office real estate industry, including employees working from home, flexible work schedules, open workspaces, video conferences and teleconferences.
•Risks relating to the factors that affect the retail environment, including unemployment, weak income growth, lack of available consumer credit, industry slowdowns, increased consumer debt, poor housing market conditions and the need to pay down existing obligations.
•Risks relating to business disruptions and the performance of our information technology systems.
•Risks relating to businesses and properties that we are invested in, either solely or in connection with co-venturers, partners, fund investors or co-tenants.
•Risks relating to disputes, governmental and regulatory policies and investigations and possible litigation.
•Risks relating to climate change and its impact on our operations and markets.
• Risks relating to the phasing out of the London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”).
Risks Relating to Us and Our Structure
•Risks relating to our reliance on the Property Partnership and, indirectly, the Holding Entities and our operating entities to provide us with funds.
Risks Relating to Our Relationship with Brookfield
•Risks relating to our dependence on Brookfield and the Service Providers, and conflicts of interests therewith.
•Risks relating to our inability to have access to all investment opportunities that Brookfield identifies.
•Risks relating to the departure of some or all of Brookfield’s professionals.
•Risks relating to Brookfield’s 100% ownership of our LP Units.
•Risks relating to the significantly limited fiduciary obligations imposed on Brookfield to act in the best interests of our preferred unitholders or our best interest.
•Risks relating to our inability to terminate the Master Services Agreement.
•Risks relating to our indemnification of the Service Providers.
Risks Relating to Our Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units
•Risks relating to redemption of our Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units.
•Risks related to the issuance of additional Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units.
•Risks related to the payment and priority of payment of distributions of our Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units.
•Risks related to the ratings, extremely limited voting rights, and transferability of our Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units.
Risks Relating to Taxation
•Risks related to United States, Canadian and Bermudan taxation, and the effects thereof on our business and operations.
Risks Relating to Our Business
Our economic performance and the value of our assets are subject to the risks incidental to the ownership and operation of real estate assets.
Our economic performance, the value of our assets and, therefore, the value of our units and the New LP Preferred Units are subject to the risks normally associated with the ownership and operation of real estate assets, including but not limited to:
•downturns and trends in the national, regional and local economic conditions where our properties and other assets are located;
•the cyclical nature of the real estate industry;
•local real estate market conditions, such as an oversupply of commercial properties, including space available by sublease, or a reduction in demand for such properties;
•changes in interest rates and the availability of financing;
•competition from other properties;
•changes in market rental rates and our ability to rent space on favorable terms;
•the bankruptcy, insolvency, credit deterioration or other default of our tenants;
•the need to periodically renovate, repair and re-lease space and the costs thereof;
•increases in maintenance, insurance and operating costs;
•civil disturbances, earthquakes and other natural disasters, pandemics or terrorist acts or acts of war, or firearm-related violence which may result in uninsured or underinsured losses;
•the decrease in the attractiveness of our properties to tenants;
•the decrease in the underlying value of our properties; and
•certain significant expenditures, including property taxes, maintenance costs, mortgage payments, insurance costs and related charges that must be made regardless of whether a property is producing sufficient income to service these expenses.
We are dependent upon the economic conditions of the markets where our assets are located.
We are affected by local, regional, national and international economic conditions and other events and occurrences that affect the markets in which we own assets. Some key impacts of general economic turmoil include contraction in credit markets resulting in a widening of credit spreads, devaluations and enhanced volatility in global equity, commodity and foreign exchange markets and a general lack of market liquidity. A slowdown in the financial markets or other key measures of the global economy or the local economies of the regions in which we operate, including, but not limited to, employment rates, business conditions, inflation, fuel and energy costs, commodity prices, lack of available credit, the state of the financial markets, interest rates and tax rates may adversely affect our growth and profitability.
A protracted decline in economic conditions will cause downward pressure on our operating margins and asset values as a result of lower demand for space. A prolonged downturn in the markets in which we operate would result in reduced demand for space and number of prospective tenants and will affect the ability of our properties to generate significant revenue.
Adverse changes in economic conditions will also make it more challenging to forecast our operating results and make business decisions, including regarding prioritization of investments in our business. An economic downturn or increased uncertainty may also materially impact revenues, profits and cash flow; volatile energy, commodity input and consumables prices and currency exchange rates could materially impact costs; and poor local or regional economic conditions could materially impact the level of traffic to our properties. An economic downturn would also lead to higher borrowing costs or reduced availability of capital markets, reduced liquidity, adverse impacts on our service providers, failures of counterparties including financial institutions and insurers, asset impairments and declines in the value of our financial instruments. The devaluation and volatility of global stock markets could also materially impact the valuation of our units.
We are subject to interest rate risk and the rise in interest rates has and will continue to adversely affect us and the value of an investment in our units, the New LP Preferred Units and our operational cash flows.
A number of our assets are interest rate sensitive: increases in long-term interest rates will, absent all else, increase our interest rate expense, impacting profitability, and decrease the value of these assets by reducing the present value of the cash flows expected to be produced by the asset. An increase in interest rates could decrease the amount buyers may be willing to pay for our properties, thereby reducing the market value of our properties and limiting our ability to sell properties or to obtain mortgage financing secured by our properties. Further, increased interest rates may effectively increase the cost of properties we acquire to the extent we utilize leverage for those acquisitions and may result in a reduction in our acquisitions to the extent we reduce the amount we offer to pay for properties, due to the effect of increased interest rates, to a price that sellers may not accept. Although interest rates have remained at relatively low levels on a historical basis, in many jurisdictions in which we operate, a period of sharply rising interest rates may cause certain market dislocations that could negatively impact our financial performance, increase the cost of debt financing and thereby negatively impact the ability of our managed assets to obtain attractive financing or refinancing and could increase the cost of such financing if obtained. Interest rate increases would impact the amount of revenue generated by our managed assets and may lead to an increase in the amount of cash required to service our obligations. Although we attempt to manage interest rate risk, there can be no assurance that we will hedge such exposure
effectively or at all in the future. Accordingly, increases in interest rates above that which we anticipate based upon historical trends would adversely affect our cash flows.
We face risks associated with the use of debt to finance our business, including refinancing risk.
We incur debt in the ordinary course of our business and therefore are subject to the risks associated with debt financing. The risks associated with our debt financing, including the following, may adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations:
•cash flows may be insufficient to meet required payments of principal and interest;
•payments of principal and interest on borrowings may leave insufficient cash resources to pay operating expenses;
•we may not be able to refinance indebtedness on our properties at maturity due to business and market factors, including: disruptions in the capital and credit markets (including the rise in interest rates); the estimated cash flows of our properties and other assets; the value of our properties and other assets; and financial, competitive, business and other factors, including factors beyond our control; and
•if refinanced, the terms of a refinancing may not be as favorable as the original terms of the related indebtedness.
Our operating entities have a significant degree of leverage on their assets. Highly leveraged assets are inherently more sensitive to declines in revenues, increases in expenses and interest rates, and adverse market conditions. A leveraged company’s income and net assets also tend to increase or decrease at a greater rate than would otherwise be the case if money had not been borrowed. As a result, the risk of loss associated with a leveraged company, all other things being equal, is generally greater than for companies with comparatively less debt. Leverage may also result in a requirement for liquidity, which may force the sale of assets at times of low demand and/or prices for such assets and may adversely affect our ability to make distributions or payments to our preferred unitholders and lenders.
We rely on our operating entities to provide our company with the funds necessary to make distributions on our units and the New LP Preferred Units as well as to meet our financial obligations. The leverage on our assets may affect the funds available to our company if the terms of the debt impose restrictions on the ability of our operating entities to make distributions to our company. In addition, our operating entities generally have to service their debt obligations before making distributions to our company or their parent entity. The Property Partnership is also required to make distributions to preferred unitholders before making distributions to us.
We are subject to foreign currency risk and our risk management activities may adversely affect the performance of our operations.
Some of our assets and operations are in countries where the U.S. Dollar is not the functional currency. These operations pay distributions in currencies other than the U.S. Dollar which we must convert to U.S. Dollars prior to making distributions on our units and the New LP Preferred Units. A significant depreciation in the value of such foreign currencies may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
When managing our exposure to such market risks, we may use forward contracts, options, swaps, caps, collars and floors or pursue other strategies or use other forms of derivative instruments. The success of any hedging or other derivative transactions that we enter into generally will depend on our ability to structure contracts that appropriately offset our risk position. As a result, while we may enter into such transactions in order to reduce our exposure to market risks, unanticipated market changes may result in poorer overall investment performance than if the transaction had not been executed. Such transactions may also limit the opportunity for gain if the value of a hedged position increases.
We are subject to risks relating to liquidity requirements.
Our partnership has significant liquidity requirements. Adverse market and economic conditions may negatively impact the sources of liquidity necessary or desirable to effectively operate our business. Reduced or restricted liquidity could impact our ability to continue to grow and expand our business, diversify our assets promptly in response to changing economic or investment conditions, fund our capital commitments, deleverage our portfolio and make cash distributions. Our liquidity is substantially dependent on the pace and size of investments and realizations in our LP Investments segment. Large commercial properties like the ones that we own can be hard to sell, especially if local market conditions are poor. Additionally, financial difficulties of other property owners resulting in distressed sales could depress real estate values in the markets in which we
operate in times of illiquidity. These restrictions reduce our ability to respond to changes in the performance of our assets and could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.
Changes in our credit ratings may have an adverse effect on our financial position and ability to raise capital.
We cannot assure you that any credit rating assigned to our partnership, any of our subsidiaries or any of our subsidiaries’ securities will remain in effect for any given period of time or that any rating will not be lowered or withdrawn entirely by the relevant rating agency. A lowering or withdrawal of such ratings may have an adverse effect on our financial position and ability to raise capital.
We face potential adverse effects from tenant defaults, bankruptcies or insolvencies.
A commercial tenant may experience a downturn in its business, which could cause the loss of that tenant as a tenant or weaken its financial condition and result in its inability to make rental payments when due or, for retail tenants, a reduction in percentage rent payable. If a tenant defaults, we may experience delays and incur costs in enforcing our rights as landlord and protecting our investments.
We cannot evict a tenant solely because of its bankruptcy. In addition, in certain jurisdictions where we own properties, a court may authorize a tenant to reject and terminate its lease. In such a case, our claim against the tenant for unpaid, future rent would be subject to a statutory cap that might be substantially less than the remaining rent owed under the lease. In any event, it is unlikely that a bankrupt or insolvent tenant will pay the full amount it owes under a lease. The loss of rental payments from tenants and costs of re-leasing would adversely affect our cash flows and results of operations. In the case of our retail properties, the bankruptcy or insolvency of an anchor tenant or tenant with stores at many of our properties would cause us to suffer lower revenues and operational difficulties, including difficulties leasing the remainder of the property. In addition, the loss of a significant tenant (particularly if related to one of our signature projects, or if otherwise widely publicized) could cause harm to our reputation. Significant expenses associated with each property, such as mortgage payments, real estate taxes and maintenance costs, are generally not reduced when circumstances cause a reduction in income from the property. In the event of a significant number of lease defaults and/or tenant bankruptcies, our cash flows may not be sufficient to pay cash distributions to our preferred unitholders and repay maturing debt or other obligations.
Our inability to enter into renewal or new leases with tenants on favorable terms or at all for all or a substantial portion of space that is subject to expiring leases would adversely affect our cash flows and operating results.
Our properties generate revenue through rental payments made by tenants of the properties. Upon the expiry of any lease, there can be no assurance that the lease will be renewed or the tenant replaced. The terms of any renewal or replacement lease may be less favorable to us than the existing lease. We would be adversely affected, in particular, if any major tenant ceases to be a tenant and cannot be replaced on similar or better terms or at all. Additionally, we may not be able to lease our properties to an appropriate mix of tenants. Retail tenants may negotiate leases containing exclusive rights to sell particular types of merchandise or services within a particular retail property. These provisions may limit the number and types of prospective tenants for the vacant space in such properties.
Our competitors may adversely affect our ability to lease our properties which may cause our cash flows and operating results to suffer.
Each segment of the real estate industry is competitive. Numerous other developers, managers and owners of commercial properties compete with us in seeking tenants and, in the case of our multifamily properties, there are numerous housing alternatives which compete with our properties in attracting residents. Some of the properties of our competitors may be newer, better located or better capitalized. These competing properties may have vacancy rates higher than our properties, which may result in their owners being willing to make space available at lower prices than the space in our properties, particularly if there is an oversupply of space available in the market. Competition for tenants could have an adverse effect on our ability to lease our properties and on the rents that we may charge or concessions that we must grant, which may cause our cash flows and operating results to suffer.
Our ability to realize our strategies and capitalize on our competitive strengths are dependent on the ability of our operating entities to effectively operate our large group of commercial properties, maintain good relationships with tenants, and remain well-capitalized, and our failure to do any of the foregoing would affect our ability to compete effectively in the markets in which we do business.
Our insurance may not cover some potential losses or may not be obtainable at commercially reasonable rates, which could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.
We maintain insurance on our properties in amounts and with deductibles that we believe are in line with what owners of similar properties carry; however, our insurance may not cover some potential losses or may not be obtainable at commercially reasonable rates in the future.
There also are certain types of risks (such as war, environmental contamination such as toxic mold, and lease and other contract claims) that are either uninsurable or not economically insurable. Should any uninsured or underinsured loss occur, we could lose our investment in, and anticipated profits and cash flows from, one or more properties, and we would continue to be obligated to repay any recourse mortgage indebtedness on such properties.
Possible terrorist activity and physical security issues could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations and our insurance may not cover some losses due to such activities or may not be obtainable at commercially reasonable rates.
Possible terrorist attacks and physical security issues in the markets where our properties are located may result in declining economic activity, which could reduce the demand for space at our properties, reduce the value of our properties and harm the demand for goods and services offered by our tenants.
Additionally, terrorist activities and physical security issues could directly affect the value of our properties through damage, destruction or loss. Our Core Office portfolio is concentrated in large metropolitan areas, some of which have been or may be perceived to be subject to terrorist attacks. Many of our office properties consist of high-rise buildings, which may also be subject to this actual or perceived threat. Our retail properties in our Core Retail portfolio could be subject to actual or perceived threat of mass shootings and other firearm-related violence. Our insurance may not cover some losses due to such activities or may not be obtainable at commercially reasonable rates.
We may be adversely affected by trends in the office real estate industry.
Some businesses increasingly permit employee work from home, flexible work schedules, open workplaces, videoconferences and teleconferences and sustained hesitancy regarding return-to-office following COVID-19 related shutdowns could limit the amount of office leasing we are able to execute. There is also an increasing trend of businesses utilizing shared office and co-working spaces. These practices enable businesses to reduce their space requirements. These trends could over time erode the overall demand for office space and, in turn, place downward pressure on occupancy, rental rates and property valuations. A reduced demand for office space could have an adverse impact on our business, cash flow, financial condition and results of operations.
We are subject to risks that affect the retail environment.
We are subject to risks that affect the retail environment, including unemployment, weak income growth, inflation, lack of available consumer credit, industry slowdowns and plant closures, low consumer confidence, increased consumer debt, poor housing market conditions, adverse weather conditions, natural disasters and the need to pay down existing obligations. Any of these factors could negatively affect consumer spending and adversely affect the sales of our retail tenants. This could have an unfavorable effect on our operations and our ability to attract new retail tenants.
In addition, our retail tenants face competition from retailers at other regional malls, outlet malls and other discount shopping centers, discount shopping clubs, catalogue companies, and through internet sales and telemarketing. Competition of these types could reduce the percentage rent payable by certain retail tenants and adversely affect our revenues and cash flows. Additionally, our retail tenants are dependent on perceptions by retailers and shoppers of the safety, convenience and attractiveness of our retail properties. If retailers and shoppers perceive competing properties and other retailing options such as the internet to be more convenient or of a higher quality, our revenues may be adversely affected.
Some of our retail lease agreements include a co-tenancy provision which allows the mall tenant to pay a reduced rent amount and, in certain instances, terminate the lease, if we fail to maintain certain occupancy levels at the mall. In addition, certain of our tenants have the ability to terminate their leases prior to the lease expiration date if their sales do not meet agreed upon thresholds. Therefore, if occupancy, tenancy or sales fall below certain thresholds, rents we are entitled to receive from our retail tenants would be reduced and our ability to attract new tenants may be limited.
The computation of cost reimbursements from our retail tenants for common area maintenance, insurance and real estate taxes is complex and involves numerous judgments including interpretation of lease terms and other tenant lease provisions. Most tenants make monthly fixed payments of common area maintenance, insurance, real estate taxes and other cost reimbursements and, after the end of the calendar year, we compute each tenant’s final cost reimbursements and issue a bill or credit for the full amount, after considering amounts paid by the tenant during the year. The billed amounts could be disputed by the tenant or become the subject of a tenant audit or even litigation. There can be no assurance that we will collect all or any portion of these amounts.
A business disruption may adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.
Our business is vulnerable to damages from any number of sources, including computer viruses, unauthorized access, energy blackouts, natural disasters, pandemics, terrorism, war and telecommunication failures. Any system failure or accident that causes interruptions in our operations could result in a material disruption to our business. If we are unable to recover from a business disruption on a timely basis, our financial condition and results of operations would be adversely affected. We may also incur additional costs to remedy damages caused by such disruptions, which could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.
We are subject to risks associated with pandemics, epidemics and other public health emergencies, including COVID-19.
Our business could be exposed to effects of pandemics/epidemics such as COVID-19 (including the emergence and progression of new variants), which could materially adversely impact our operations.
A local, regional, national or international outbreak of a contagious disease, such as COVID-19, which spread across the globe at a rapid pace impacting global commercial activity and travel, or future public health crises, epidemics or pandemics, could materially and adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition due to disruptions to commerce, reduced economic activity and other unforeseen consequences that are beyond our control.
The ongoing prevalence of COVID-19, the emergence and progression of new variants and the actions taken in response to COVID-19 by government authorities across various geographies in which we and our businesses operate have interrupted business activities and supply chains, disrupted travel, contributed to significant volatility in the financial markets, impacted social conditions and adversely affected local, regional, national and international economic conditions as well as the labor market. There can be no assurance that strategies that we employ to address potential disruptions in operations will mitigate the adverse impacts of any of these factors.
The longer-term economic impacts of COVID-19 will depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain, constantly evolving and difficult to predict. These developments may include the risk of new and potentially more severe variant strains of COVID-19. Additional actions that may be taken to contain COVID-19, such as reimposing previously lifted measures or putting in place additional restrictions, depending on their nature, duration and intensity, could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial position, results of operations or cash flows. Also, the pace, availability, distribution, acceptance and effectiveness of vaccines may affect the impact of the variant strains on our business.
In addition, the potential effects of COVID-19 on our employees or the employees of our operating companies or other companies with which we and they do business could disrupt our business operations. The effectiveness of external parties, including governmental and non-governmental organizations, in combating the spread and severity of the pandemic could have a material impact on the adverse effects we experience. These events, which are beyond our control, could cause a material adverse effect on our results of operations in any period and, depending on their severity, could also materially and adversely affect our financial condition.
The failure of our information technology systems, or an act of deliberate cyber terrorism, could adversely impact our reputation and financial performance.
We operate in businesses that are dependent on information systems and technology. Our information systems and technology may not continue to be able to accommodate our growth, and the cost of maintaining such systems may increase from its current level, either of which could have a material adverse effect on us.
We rely on third-party service providers to manage certain aspects of our business, including for certain information systems and technology, data processing systems, and the secure processing, storage and transmission of information. Any interruption or deterioration in the performance of these third parties or failures of their information systems and technology could impair the quality of our operations and could adversely affect our business and reputation.
We rely on certain information technology systems which may be subject to cyber terrorism intended to obtain unauthorized access to our proprietary information, destroy data or disable, degrade or sabotage our systems, through the introduction of computer viruses, cyber-attacks and other means, and could originate from a variety of sources including our own employees or unknown third parties. Any such breach or compromise could also go undetected for an extended period. There can be no assurance that measures implemented to protect the integrity of our systems will provide adequate protection or enable us to detect and remedy any such breaches or compromises in a timely manner or at all. If our information systems are compromised, we could suffer a disruption in one or more of our businesses. This could have a negative impact on our financial condition and results of operations or result in reputational damage.
We face risks associated with property acquisitions.
Competition from other well-capitalized real estate investors, including both publicly traded real estate investment trusts and institutional investment funds, may significantly increase the purchase price of, or prevent us from acquiring, a desired property. Acquisition agreements will typically contain conditions to closing, including completion of due diligence to our satisfaction or other conditions that are not within our control, which may not be satisfied. Acquired properties may be located in new markets where we may have limited knowledge and understanding of the local economy, an absence of business relationships in the area or unfamiliarity with local government and applicable laws and regulations. We may be unable to finance acquisitions on favorable terms or newly acquired properties may fail to perform as expected. We may underestimate the costs necessary to bring an acquired property up to standards established for its intended market position or we may be unable to quickly and efficiently integrate new acquisitions into our existing operations. We may also acquire properties subject to liabilities and without any recourse, or with only limited recourse, with respect to unknown liabilities. Each of these factors could have an adverse effect on our results of operations and financial condition.
We do not have sole control over the properties that we own with co-venturers, partners, fund investors or co-tenants or over the revenues and certain decisions associated with those properties, which may limit our flexibility with respect to these investments.
We participate in joint ventures, partnerships, funds and co-tenancies affecting many of our properties. Such investments involve risks not present were a third party not involved, including the possibility that our co-venturers, partners, fund investors or co-tenants might become bankrupt or otherwise fail to fund their share of required capital contributions. The bankruptcy of one of our co-venturers, partners, fund investors or co-tenants could materially and adversely affect the relevant property or properties. Pursuant to bankruptcy laws, we could be precluded from taking some actions affecting the estate of the other investor without prior court approval which would, in most cases, entail prior notice to other parties and a hearing. At a minimum, the requirement to obtain court approval may delay the actions we would or might want to take. If the relevant joint venture or other investment entity has incurred recourse obligations, the discharge in bankruptcy of one of the other investors might result in our ultimate liability for a greater portion of those obligations than would otherwise be required.
Additionally, our co-venturers, partners, fund investors or co-tenants might at any time have economic or other business interests or goals that are inconsistent with those of our company, and we could become engaged in a dispute with any of them that might affect our ability to develop or operate a property. In addition, we do not have sole control of certain major decisions relating to these properties, including decisions relating to: the sale of the properties; refinancing; timing and amount of distributions of cash from such properties; and capital improvements. For example, when we invest in Brookfield-sponsored real estate funds, there is often a finite term to the fund’s investments which could lead to certain investments being sold prior to the date we would otherwise choose.
In some instances, where we are the property manager for a joint venture, the joint venture retains joint approval rights over various material matters such as the budget for the property, specific leases and our leasing plan. Moreover, in certain property management arrangements the other venturer can terminate the property management agreement in limited circumstances relating to enforcement of the property manager’s obligations. In addition, the sale or transfer of interests in some of our joint ventures and partnerships is subject to rights of first refusal or first offer and some joint venture and partnership agreements provide for buy-sell or similar arrangements. Such rights may be triggered at a time when we may not want to sell but we may be forced to do so because we may not have the financial resources at that time to purchase the other party’s interest. Such rights may also inhibit our ability to sell an interest in a property or a joint venture or partnership within our desired time frame or on any other desired basis.
We have significant interests in Brookfield-sponsored real estate funds, and poor investment returns in these funds could have a negative impact on our financial condition and results of operations.
We have significant interests in Brookfield-sponsored real estate funds, and poor investment returns in these funds, due to either market conditions or underperformance (relative to their competitors or to benchmarks), could negatively affect our financial condition and results of operations. In addition, interests in such funds are subject to the risks inherent in the ownership and operation of real estate and real estate-related businesses and assets generally.
We are subject to possible health and safety and environmental liabilities and other possible liabilities.
As an owner of real property, we are subject to various laws relating to environmental matters. We could be liable under these laws for the costs of removal and remediation of certain hazardous substances or wastes present in our buildings, released or deposited on or in our properties or disposed of at other locations. These costs could be significant and reduce the cash available for our business which could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. The failure to remove or remediate such substances could adversely affect our ability to sell our properties or our ability to borrow using real estate as collateral and could potentially result in claims or other proceedings against us, which could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. Environmental laws and regulations can change rapidly and we may become subject to more stringent environmental laws and regulations in the future. Compliance with more stringent environmental laws and regulations could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
The ownership and operation of our assets carry varying degrees of inherent risk or liability related to worker and tenant health and safety and the environment, including the risk of government imposed orders to remedy unsafe conditions and potential civil liability. Compliance with health, safety and environmental standards and the requirements set out in our licenses, permits and other approvals are important to our business. We have incurred and will continue to incur significant capital and operating expenditures to comply with health, safety and environmental standards and to obtain and comply with licenses, permits and other approvals and to assess and manage potential liability exposure. Nevertheless, we may be unsuccessful in obtaining or maintaining an important license, permit or other approval or become subject to government orders, investigations, inquiries or other proceedings (including civil claims) relating to health, safety and environmental matters. The occurrence of any of these events or any changes, additions to, or more rigorous enforcement of, health, safety and environmental standards, licenses, permits or other approvals could have a significant impact on our operations and/or result in material expenditures. As a consequence, no assurance can be given that additional environmental and health and safety issues relating to presently known or unknown matters will not require unanticipated expenditures, or result in fines, penalties or other consequences (including changes to operations) material to our business and operations.
Negative publicity could damage our reputation and business.
Our ability to attract and retain tenants, investors and employees is impacted by our reputation. Negative publicity can expose us to litigation and regulatory action could damage our reputation, adversely affect our ability to attract and retain tenants and employees, and divert management’s attention from day-to-day operations. The loss of significant tenants could also negatively impact our reputation. Significant harm to our reputation can also arise from employee misconduct, unethical behavior, environmental matters, litigation or regulatory outcomes, failing to deliver minimum or required standards of safety, service and quality, compliance failures, unintended disclosure of confidential information and the activities of our tenants and counterparties, including vendors.
We may be exposed to actual or alleged fraud, bribery, corruption, other illegal acts, inadequate or failed internal processes or systems or from external events which could lead to significant losses and harm to our reputation.
We may suffer a significant loss resulting from fraud, bribery, corruption, other illegal acts, inadequate or failed internal processes or systems, or from external events, such as security threats affecting our ability to operate. We operate in different markets and rely on our employees and certain third-parties to follow our policies and processes as well as applicable laws with respect to their activities. Risk of illegal acts or failed systems is managed through our infrastructure, controls, systems, policies and people, complemented by central groups focusing on enterprise-wide management of specific operational risks such as fraud, trading, physical security, outsourcing, and business disruption, as well as personnel and systems risks. Failure to adequately manage these risks could result in direct or indirect financial loss, reputational impact, regulatory censure or failure in the management of other risks such as credit or market risk.
We are subject to a number of privacy laws and laws and regulations governing payments and contributions to public officials or other third parties. The global focus on anti-bribery and corruption enforcement may lead to investigations, both formal and informal, in this area, the results of which cannot be predicted. Different laws that are applicable to us may contain conflicting provisions, making our compliance more difficult. The policies and procedures we have implemented to protect against non-compliance with anti-bribery and corruption legislation and privacy legislation may be inadequate. If we fail to comply with these laws and regulations, we could be exposed to claims for damages, financial penalties, reputational harm, incarceration of our employees, restrictions on our operations and other liabilities, which could negatively affect our operating results and financial condition. In addition, we may be subject to successor liability for violations under these laws or other acts of bribery committed by companies in which we or our funds invest.
Instances of bribery, fraud, accounting irregularities and other improper, illegal or corrupt practices can be difficult to detect, and fraud and other deceptive practices can be widespread in certain jurisdictions. We invest in emerging market countries that may not have established stringent anti-bribery and corruption laws and regulations, or where existing laws and regulations may not be consistently enforced or that are perceived to have materially higher levels of corruption according to international rating standards. For example, we invest in jurisdictions that are perceived to have materially higher levels of corruption according to international rating standards, such as China, India and Brazil. Due diligence on investment opportunities in these jurisdictions is frequently more challenging because consistent and uniform commercial practices in such locations may not have developed or do not meet international standards. Bribery, fraud, accounting irregularities and corrupt practices can be especially difficult to detect in such locations.
We may be subject to litigation.
In the ordinary course of our business, we may be subject to litigation from time to time. The outcome of any such proceedings may materially adversely affect us and may continue without resolution for long periods of time. Any litigation may consume substantial amounts of our management’s time and attention, and that time and the devotion of these resources to litigation may, at times, be disproportionate to the amounts at stake in the litigation.
The acquisition, ownership and disposition of real property expose us to certain litigation risks which could result in losses, some of which may be material. Litigation may be commenced with respect to a property we have acquired in relation to activities that took place prior to our acquisition of such property. In addition, at the time of disposition of an individual property, a potential buyer may claim that it should have been afforded the opportunity to purchase the asset or alternatively that such buyer should be awarded due diligence expenses incurred or statutory damages for misrepresentation relating to disclosures made, if such buyer is passed over in favor of another as part of our efforts to maximize sale proceeds. Similarly, successful buyers may later sue us under various damage theories, including those stemming from tort, for losses associated with latent defects or other problems. We may also be exposed to litigation resulting from the activities of our tenants or their customers.
Climate change may adversely impact our operations and markets.
There is general consensus among members of the scientific community and the general public that human-induced activity is affecting many weather and climate patterns across the globe, and that evidence of observed changes in extremes such as heatwaves, heavy precipitation, droughts, and tropical cyclones, and their attribution to human influence, has strengthened. Climate change, including the impact of global warming, creates physical and transition risk.
Physical risks from climate change include an increase in sea level and changes in weather conditions, such as an increase in intense precipitation and extreme heat events, as well as tropical and non-tropical storms. We own buildings in locations that may be particularly susceptible to climate stress events or adverse localized effects of climate change, including but not limited to sea-level rise and increased storm frequency or intensity. The occurrence of one or more natural disasters, such as hurricanes, fires, floods, and earthquakes (whether or not caused by climate change), could cause considerable damage to our properties, disrupt our operations or the operations of our tenants and negatively impact our financial performance. To the extent these events result in significant damage to or closure of one or more of our buildings, our operations and financial performance could be adversely affected through lost tenants and an inability to lease or re-lease the space. Although we work to mitigate these risks by securing adequate insurance to cover damage that may be incurred through adverse weather incidents or business interruption, through our annual capital planning processes that assess resiliency factors related to climate change such as mitigating potential physical risks, increasing our properties’ energy efficiency, evaluating equipment end of life, increasing asset competitiveness and by taking up technologies that seek to lower our overall greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions , we can provide no assurance that such efforts will be effective.
Transition risk refers to economic, societal and technological challenges resulting from the shift to a low carbon economy that may be seen in changes to climate and energy policies, shifts to low-carbon technologies and liability issues that can vary substantially depending on scenarios for policy and technology changes. Although we work to mitigate these risks by undertaking internal climate change transition risk reviews within parts of our business and developing awareness and competency in other parts, we can provide no assurance that such efforts will be effective.
We believe, to address climate change, the world will have to transition to a net zero-carbon economy. We are proactively evolving our portfolio of investments consistent with this imperative. As demand and needs shift, our investment strategy will continue to adapt in line with broader trends and opportunities to ensure we continue to perform for our investors. Although we are incorporating climate change implications as part of underwriting, focusing on assets that are essential for the economies in which we invest, meet societal needs and that we believe will appreciate in value over time and driving efficiencies across our businesses, contributing to lower environmental impact and improved operations, we can provide no assurance that such efforts will be effective.
We have launched various initiatives to formalize our commitment to achieving net zero GHG emissions and better understand our climate change risks and incorporate these considerations into risk management activities. We support Brookfield’s commitment to the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative and the goal of achieving net zero GHG emissions by 2050 or sooner. In the second quarter of 2022, Brookfield submitted its 2030 net-zero interim target, setting out its commitment to reduce emissions by two-thirds by 2030 across $147 billion (approximately one-third) of its assets under management from a 2020 base-line year. We can provide no assurance that such efforts will be effective.
In 2021, we undertook a phase one climate change risk analysis, and through this exercise, have identified certain assets that due to their geographical location may have heightened exposure to physical or transition risk. In 2022, we conducted several asset level analyses at properties identified as higher risk through the phase one climate change risk analysis, to validate this initial assessment, and have begun to execute strategies to mitigate potential climate change related risks at certain properties, however, we can provide no assurance that such efforts will be effective. We also continue to align with the recommendations from the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures to better measure and communicate risks, and are building up to a formal report for the 2022 reporting year.
Uncertainty regarding LIBOR may adversely affect the interest we pay under certain of our indebtedness
The Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”) in the United Kingdom ceased compelling banks to submit rates for calculation of LIBOR in 2021. In response, the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York organized the Alternative Reference Rates Committee which identified the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (“SOFR”) as its preferred alternative to USD-LIBOR in derivatives and other financial contracts. In November 2020, the ICE Benchmark Administration Limited, the benchmark administrator for USD LIBOR rates, proposed extending the publication of certain commonly-used USD LIBOR settings until June 30, 2023 and the FCA issued a statement supporting such proposal. It is not possible to predict the effect of these changes, including when LIBOR will cease to be available or when there will be sufficient liquidity in the SOFR markets.
We have certain outstanding debt and derivatives with variable rates that are indexed to LIBOR. The discontinuance of, or changes to, benchmark interest rates may require adjustments to agreements to which we and other market participants are parties, as well as to related systems and processes. In the transition from the use of LIBOR to SOFR or other alternatives, uncertainty exists as to the extent and manner of future changes may result in interest rates and/or payments that are higher than or lower than or that do not otherwise correlate over time with the interest rates and/or payments that would have been made on our obligations if LIBOR was available in its current form. Use of alternative interest rates or other LIBOR reforms could result in increased volatility or a tightening of credit markets which could adversely affect our ability to obtain cost-effective financing. In addition, the transition of our existing LIBOR financing agreements to alternative benchmarks may result in unanticipated changes to the overall interest rate paid on our liabilities.
Risks Relating to Us and Our Structure
Our company relies on the Property Partnership and, indirectly, the Holding Entities and our operating entities to provide us with the funds necessary to pay distributions and meet our financial obligations.
Our company’s sole direct investments are its managing general partnership interest in the Property Partnership, which owns almost all of the common shares or equity interests, as applicable, of the Holding Entities, through which we hold our interests in the operating entities. Our company has no independent means of generating revenue. As a result, we depend on distributions and other payments from the Property Partnership and, indirectly, the Holding Entities and our operating entities to
provide us with the funds necessary to pay distributions on our units, the New LP Preferred Units, as well as to meet our financial obligations. The Property Partnership, the Holding Entities and our operating entities are legally distinct from our company and they are generally required to service their debt obligations before making distributions to us, New LP, or their parent entity, as applicable, thereby reducing the amount of our cash flow available to pay distributions on our units, the New LP Preferred Units, fund working capital and satisfy other needs. In addition, the Property Partnership is required to make distributions to its preferred unitholders before making distributions to us. Any other entities through which we may conduct operations in the future will also be legally distinct from our company and may be restricted in their ability to pay dividends and distributions or otherwise make funds available to our company under certain conditions.
We anticipate that the only distributions our company will receive in respect of our managing general partnership interests in the Property Partnership will consist of amounts that are intended to assist our company in making distributions to the holders of our Preferred Units in accordance with our company’s distribution policy and to allow our company to pay expenses as they become due.
Our company is not, and does not intend to become, regulated as an investment company under the U.S. Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “Investment Company Act”) (and similar legislation in other jurisdictions) and if our company were deemed an “investment company” under the Investment Company Act applicable restrictions would make it impractical for us to operate as contemplated.
The Investment Company Act and the rules thereunder (and similar legislation in other jurisdictions) provide certain protections to investors and impose certain restrictions on companies that are registered as investment companies. Among other things, such rules limit or prohibit transactions with affiliates, impose limitations on the issuance of debt and equity securities and impose certain governance requirements. Our company has not been and does not intend to become regulated as an investment company and our company intends to conduct its activities so it will not be deemed to be an investment company under the Investment Company Act (and similar legislation in other jurisdictions). In order to ensure that our company is not deemed to be an investment company, we may be required to materially restrict or limit the scope of our operations or plans, we will be limited in the types of acquisitions that we may make and we may need to modify our organizational structure or dispose of assets that we would not otherwise dispose of. Moreover, if anything were to happen that would potentially cause our company to be deemed an investment company under the Investment Company Act, it would be impractical for us to operate as intended, agreements and arrangements between and among us and Brookfield would be impaired and our business, financial condition and results of operations would be materially adversely affected. Accordingly, we would be required to take extraordinary steps to address the situation, such as the amendment or termination of our Master Services Agreement, the restructuring of our company and the Holding Entities, the amendment of our limited partnership agreement or the termination of our company, any of which would materially adversely affect the value of our units. In addition, if our company were deemed to be an investment company under the Investment Company Act, it would be taxable as a corporation for U.S. federal income tax purposes, and such treatment would materially adversely affect the value of our units. See Item 10.E. “Additional Information - Taxation - U.S. Tax Considerations - Partnership Status of Our Company and the Property Partnership”.
Risks Relating to Our Relationship with Brookfield
Brookfield exercises full control over us and we are highly dependent on the Service Providers.
On July 26, 2021, Brookfield Corporation acquired all of our LP Units. Since that time, our LP Units are no longer publicly traded and BPY is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield Corporation. Brookfield is also the sole shareholder of the BPY General Partner. As a result of its ownership of BPY and the BPY General Partner, Brookfield fully controls our and their activities (including the appointment and removal of directors) and exercises controlling influence over Property Partnership, for which our company is the managing general partner. In addition, the Service Providers, which are subsidiaries of Brookfield, provide management and administration services to us pursuant to our Master Services Agreement. Our company and the Property Partnership depend on the management and administration services provided by or under the direction of the Service Providers. Brookfield personnel that provide services to us under our Master Services Agreement are not required to have as their primary responsibility the management and administration of our company or the Property Partnership or to act exclusively for either of us. Such Service Providers are also expected to exercise their discretionary authority over BPY’s assets and governance more broadly, taking into account Brookfield’s own broader business interests given that BPY is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield, to cause BPY to enter into transactions that benefit Brookfield directly and that are likely to favor other Brookfield advisory clients over us. In seeking to manage business activities efficiently across all advisory clients, the Service Providers have discretion to apply certain restrictions to our investment and other activities, but not to those of other advisory clients, considering the relevant facts and circumstances it deems appropriate. As a result of the more limited protections under the U.S. Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (the “Advisers Act”) that will apply to BPY and our preferred
unitholders compared to other Brookfield advisory clients, and due to Brookfield’s 100% ownership and control of BPY, Brookfield’s interests will significantly influence the Service Providers’ conduct and approach to these determinations. It is therefore possible that the outcome for BPY and our subsidiaries will be less favorable than otherwise would have been the case. Any failure to effectively manage our business operations or to implement our strategy could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Brookfield has no obligation to source acquisition opportunities for us and we may not have access to all investment opportunities that Brookfield identifies.
Our ability to grow depends in part on Brookfield’s ability to identify and present us with acquisition opportunities. However, Brookfield has no obligation to source acquisition opportunities specifically for us. In addition, Brookfield has not agreed to commit to us any minimum level of dedicated resources for the pursuit of acquisitions. There are a number of factors that could materially and adversely impact the extent to which suitable acquisition opportunities are made available to us by Brookfield. For example, it is an integral part of Brookfield’s (and our) strategy to pursue acquisitions through consortium arrangements with institutional investors, strategic partners and/or financial sponsors and to form partnerships (including private funds, joint ventures and similar arrangements) to pursue such acquisitions on a specialized or global basis. As noted elsewhere, given that we are a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield, it will take its broader interests into account when making acquisition decisions for BPY and will likely make recommendations and determinations that are different than those taken for other Brookfield advisory clients or that it would make under different circumstances. Additionally, the same professionals within Brookfield’s organization that are involved in sourcing and executing acquisitions that are suitable for us are responsible for sourcing and executing opportunities for the vehicles, consortiums and partnerships referred to above, as well as having other responsibilities within Brookfield’s broader asset management business. Limits on the availability of such individuals will likewise result in a limitation on the availability of acquisition opportunities for us.
In making determinations about acquisition opportunities and investments, consortium arrangements or partnerships, Brookfield will be influenced by factors that result in a misalignment or conflict of interest, including consideration of Brookfield’s own broader business interests given BPY is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield. See Item 7.B., “Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions - Related Party Transactions - Relationship with Brookfield - Conflicts of Interest and Significantly Limited Fiduciary Duties.”
The departure of some or all of Brookfield’s professionals could prevent us from achieving our objectives.
We depend on the diligence, skill and business contacts of Brookfield’s professionals and the information and opportunities they generate during the normal course of their activities. Our future success will depend on the continued service of these individuals, who are not obligated to remain employed with Brookfield. Brookfield has experienced departures of key professionals in the past and may do so in the future, and we cannot predict the impact that any such departures will have on our ability to achieve our objectives. The departure of a significant number of Brookfield’s professionals for any reason, or the failure to appoint qualified or effective successors in the event of such departures, could have a material adverse effect on our ability to achieve our objectives. Our limited partnership agreement and our Master Services Agreement do not require Brookfield to maintain the employment of any of its professionals or to cause any particular professionals to provide services to us or on our behalf.
Control of our company may be transferred directly or indirectly to a third party without preferred unitholder consent.
The BPY General Partner may transfer its general partnership interest to a third party, including in a merger or consolidation or in a transfer of all or substantially all of its assets. Furthermore, at any time, Brookfield, as the sole shareholder of the BPY General Partner, may sell or transfer all or part of its shares in the BPY General Partner or, as the sole holder of our LP Units, may sell or transfer all or part of its interest in BPY. Preferred unitholder consent will not be sought in either case. If a new owner were to acquire ownership of BPY or the BPY General Partner and to appoint new directors or officers of its own choosing, it would be able to exercise substantial influence over our policies and procedures and exercise substantial influence over our management and the types of acquisitions that we make. Such changes could result in our capital being used to make acquisitions in which Brookfield has no involvement or in making acquisitions that are substantially different from our targeted acquisitions. Additionally, we cannot predict with any certainty the effect that any transfer in the control of our company or the BPY General Partner would have on our ability to raise capital or make investments in the future, because such matters would depend to a large extent on the identity of the new owner and the new owner’s intentions. As a result, our future would be uncertain and our business, financial condition and results of operations may suffer.
Our organizational and ownership structure, as well as our contractual arrangements with Brookfield, may create significant conflicts of interest that may be managed and resolved in a manner that is not in our best interests or the best interests of our preferred unitholders.
Operating as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield involves a number of relationships that will give rise to conflicts of interest between us and our preferred unitholders, on the one hand, and Brookfield, on the other hand. In certain instances, the interests of Brookfield may differ from the interests of our partnership and our preferred unitholders, including with respect to the types of acquisitions made, the timing and amount of distributions, the reinvestment of returns generated by our operations, the use of leverage when making acquisitions and the appointment of outside advisers and service providers. In addition, following the Privatization, BPY has begun a program of asset dispositions which includes asset sales to other Brookfield advisory clients, and the terms of such dispositions will be determined by Brookfield in its sole discretion, and Brookfield will generally not seek consent from our preferred unitholders for these dispositions unless required to do so under the Advisers Act. These conflicts of interest considerations are described in detail under Item 7.B. “Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions - Related Party Transactions - Relationship with Brookfield - Conflicts of Interest and Significantly Limited Fiduciary Duties”.
In addition, the Service Providers, affiliates of Brookfield, provide management services to us pursuant to our Master Services Agreement. Pursuant to our Master Services Agreement, we pay a management fee to the Service Providers equal to 1.05% of the sum of the following amounts, if any, calculated by the BPY General Partner, acting reasonably, as of the last day of the immediately preceding quarter: (i) the equity attributable to unitholders for Core Office, Core Retail and the Corporate segments of the business of BPY; and (ii) the carrying value of the outstanding non-voting common shares of Brookfield BPY Holdings Inc. (“CanHoldco”). Additionally, the Property Partnership pays a quarterly equity enhancement distribution to Property Special LP of 0.3125% of the amount by which the company’s total capitalization value at the end of each quarter exceeds its total capitalization value determined immediately following the Spin-off, subject to certain adjustments. Property Special LP also receives incentive distributions based on an amount by which quarterly distributions on the limited partnership units of the Property Partnership exceed specified target levels as set forth in the Property Partnership’s limited partnership agreement. For a further explanation of the equity enhancement and incentive distributions see Item 10.B. “Additional Information - Memorandum and Articles of Association - Description of the Property Partnership Limited Partnership Agreement - Distributions”. This relationship may give rise to conflicts of interest between us and our preferred unitholders, on the one hand, and Brookfield, on the other, as Brookfield’s interests may differ from our interests and those of our preferred unitholders.
The BPY General Partner, the sole shareholder of which is Brookfield, has sole authority to determine whether our company will make distributions and the amount and timing of these distributions. The arrangements we have with Brookfield may create an incentive for Brookfield to take actions that would have the effect of increasing distributions and fees payable to it, which may be to the detriment of our company and our preferred unitholders. For example, Brookfield may take actions to increase our distributions in order to ensure it is paid incentive distributions in the near-term when other investments or actions may be more favorable to us or our preferred unitholders.
Our arrangements with Brookfield are managed in the context of a wholly-owned subsidiary relationship and may contain terms that are less favorable than those which otherwise might have been obtained from unrelated parties.
The terms of our arrangements with Brookfield were revised by Brookfield in the context of the Privatization. While the BPY General Partner’s independent directors are aware of the terms of these arrangements and approved the arrangements on our behalf, they did not negotiate the terms. These terms, including terms relating to compensation, contractual duties, conflicts of interest and Brookfield’s ability to engage in outside activities, including activities that compete with us, our activities and limitations on liability and indemnification, may be less favorable than otherwise might have resulted if the negotiations had involved unrelated parties. While we are an advisory client of Brookfield for purposes of the Advisers Act, and therefore Brookfield will have a fiduciary duty to us, that duty will be limited significantly by the terms of our advisory agreements with Brookfield and the disclosures herein. As a result, our preferred unitholders will not receive the full protections of the Advisers Act with respect to services provided by Brookfield. In particular, as noted elsewhere, given that we are a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield, it will take its broader interests into account when making decisions for BPY and will likely make recommendations and determinations that are different than those taken for other Brookfield advisory clients or that it would make under different circumstances.
Circumstances may arise in which these arrangements will need to be amended or new arrangements will need to be entered into, and conflicts of interest between our preferred unitholders and Brookfield will arise in negotiating such new or amended arrangements. Brookfield will generally not seek consent for these arrangements unless required to do so under the Advisers Act or otherwise determined appropriate in Brookfield’s discretion. For more information, see Item 7.B. “Major
Shareholders and Related Party Transactions - Related Party Transactions - Relationship with Brookfield - Conflicts of Interest and Significantly Limited Fiduciary Duties”.
The BPY General Partner may be unable or unwilling to terminate our Master Services Agreement.
Our Master Services Agreement provides that the Service Recipients may terminate the agreement only if: (i) the Service Providers default in the performance or observance of any material term, condition or covenant contained in the agreement in a manner that results in material harm to the Service Recipients and the default continues unremedied for a period of 60 days after written notice of the breach is given to the Service Providers; (ii) the Service Providers engage in any act of fraud, misappropriation of funds or embezzlement against any Service Recipient that results in material harm to the Service Recipients; (iii) the Service Providers are grossly negligent in the performance of their duties under the agreement and such negligence results in material harm to the Service Recipients; or (iv) upon the happening of certain events relating to the bankruptcy or insolvency of the Service Providers. In addition, because the BPY General Partner is an affiliate of Brookfield, it likely will be unwilling to terminate our Master Services Agreement, even in the case of a default.
Brookfield’s obligations and fiduciary duties to us are significantly limited and we will not receive the same protections and benefits as other advisory clients of Brookfield receive.
While we are an advisory client of Brookfield for purposes of the Advisers Act, and therefore Brookfield will have a fiduciary duty to us, that duty will be limited significantly by the terms of our advisory agreements with Brookfield and the disclosures herein. As a result, our preferred unitholders will not receive the full protections of the Advisers Act with respect to services provided by Brookfield. Accordingly, our preferred unitholders will bear additional risks and Brookfield will address potential and actual conflicts of interest differently when managing us in comparison to other advisory clients of Brookfield. In particular, given that we are a wholly-owned subsidiary of Brookfield, it will take its broader interests into account when making decisions for BPY and will likely make recommendations and determinations that are different than those taken for other Brookfield advisory clients or that it would make under different circumstances. The outcome for BPY and certain of our subsidiaries therefore could be less favorable than otherwise would have been the case.
Additionally, Brookfield will manage our investments and other activities taking into account Brookfield’s own interests given we are a wholly-owned subsidiary. Among other things, Brookfield expects to manage our investments and other activities in a manner that benefits Brookfield directly and that favors its broader business activities, including other Brookfield advisory clients. This management approach will affect, among other things, the type of investment opportunities that are allocated to us, the services that we provide Brookfield-held assets (including via other Brookfield advisory clients), how Brookfield addresses conflicts of interest that will arise in managing our investments and other activities, including through transactions, such as cross trades, the provision of operational services (including property management, development and construction management, and other services) and financing arrangements, and/or other transactions between Brookfield, other Brookfield advisory clients, or portfolio companies, on the one hand, and BPY, on the other hand. Among other things, Brookfield will generally not seek consent for these transactions unless required to do so under the Advisers Act or otherwise determined appropriate in Brookfield’s sole discretion. This approach to managing conflicts will be different than the approach Brookfield takes for its other advisory clients, for example because consent will be sought for a more limited set of conflicted transactions and, given Brookfield’s ownership of 100% of our limited partnership interests, Brookfield will take its broader interests (i.e., which extend beyond our partnership) into account in managing such conflicts of interest. Among other things, this will result in certain decisions being made (and restrictions applied) with respect to our investments and other activities that would not otherwise be made (or that would be made in a different manner) than if our limited partnership interests were held by third party investors. Brookfield’s own broader interests (including its interests in other Brookfield advisory clients) will significantly influence its conduct and approach to these determinations, including in a manner that is potentially adverse to our preferred unitholders. It is therefore likely that the outcome for BPY and certain of our subsidiaries will be less favorable than otherwise would have been the case.
The liability of the Service Providers is limited under our arrangements with them and we have agreed to indemnify the Service Providers against claims that they may face in connection with such arrangements, which may lead them to assume greater risks when making decisions relating to us than they otherwise would if acting solely for their own account.
Under our Master Services Agreement, the Service Providers have not assumed any responsibility other than to provide or arrange for the provision of the services described in our Master Services Agreement in good faith and will not be responsible for any action that the BPY General Partner takes in following or declining to follow its advice or recommendations. In addition, under our limited partnership agreement, the liability of the BPY General Partner and its affiliates, including the Service Providers, is limited to the fullest extent permitted by law to conduct involving bad faith, fraud,
gross negligence or willful misconduct or, in the case of a criminal matter, action that was known to have been unlawful. The liability of the Service Providers under our Master Services Agreement is similarly limited. In addition, we have agreed to indemnify the Service Providers to the fullest extent permitted by law from and against any claims, liabilities, losses, damages, costs or expenses incurred by them or threatened in connection with our business, investments and activities or in respect of or arising from our Master Services Agreement or the services provided by the Service Providers, except to the extent that such claims, liabilities, losses, damages, costs or expenses are determined to have resulted from the conduct in respect of which such persons have liability as described above. These protections may result in the Service Providers tolerating greater risks when making decisions than otherwise would be the case, including when determining whether to use and the extent of leverage in connection with acquisitions. The indemnification arrangements to which the Service Providers are a party may also give rise to legal claims for indemnification that are adverse to us and our preferred unitholders.
Risks Relating to Our Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units
Investors should not expect BPY or New LP to redeem any Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units, as applicable, on any date that such preferred units become redeemable or on any particular date thereafter.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units are not redeemable at the option of the preferred unitholders under any circumstances. The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units may be redeemed by their issuer at the issuer’s option (i) following the occurrence of a change of control triggering event, a delisting transaction triggering event, and/or a change in tax law, in whole, out of funds legally available for such redemption, at a redemption price in cash of $25.00 per unit plus an amount equal to all accumulated and unpaid distributions thereon to, but excluding, the date of redemption, whether or not declared, (ii) prior to certain specified dates, following the occurrence of a ratings event, in whole but not in part, out of funds legally available for such redemption, at a redemption price in cash of $25.50 per unit plus an amount equal to all accumulated and unpaid distributions thereon to, but excluding, the date of redemption, whether or not declared, or (iii) at any time on or after certain specified dates, at the issuer’s option, in whole or in part, out of funds legally available for such redemption, at a redemption price in cash of $25.00 per unit plus an amount equal to all accumulated and unpaid distributions thereon to, but excluding, the date of redemption, whether or not declared. Any decision the issuer of such preferred units makes at any time to redeem the preferred units will depend upon, among other things, such issuer’s evaluation of its capital position, the terms and circumstances of any change of control, ratings event or delisting transaction, as applicable, and general market conditions at that time. As a result, the holders of the Preferred Units may be required to bear the financial risks of an investment in the Preferred Units for an indefinite period of time. Unless redeemed by New LP prior to July 26, 2081, the New LP Preferred Units will mature on July 26, 2081 at which time each New LP Preferred Unitholder will be entitled to receive $25.00 per New LP Preferred Unit, together with all accrued (whether or not declared) and unpaid distributions up to but excluding such date of maturity (less any tax required to be deducted and withheld by New LP). As a result, the holders of the New LP Preferred Units may be required to bear the financial risks of an investment in the New LP Preferred Units until their maturity on July 26, 2081.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units will also rank junior to all existing and future indebtedness of their respective issuer with respect to assets available to satisfy claims against such issuer, and rank pari passu with certain parity securities as further described in the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units. Any decision the issuer may make at any time to redeem the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units will be determined by the general partner of BPY or New LP, as applicable, in its sole discretion and will depend upon, among other things, an evaluation of the capital position of the issuer, the composition of its equity, its outstanding indebtedness and general market conditions at that time.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units are subordinated to the existing and future debt obligations of their issuer and the securities ranking senior to them, as well as existing and future debt obligations of the partnership’s subsidiaries that are not guarantors of the New LP Preferred Units and any capital stock of the partnership’s subsidiaries that are not guarantors held by others. The interests of the holders of preferred units could be diluted by the issuance of additional units of the issuer of such preferred units, including additional Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units, and by other transactions.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units are subordinated to all existing and future indebtedness of their issuer and the securities ranking senior to them, and rank pari passu with certain parity securities as further described in the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units. BPY and New LP may incur debt under credit facilities, or other existing or future debt arrangements. The payment of principal and interest on such debt will reduce cash available for distribution to its limited partners, including the preferred unitholders. In addition, the New LP Preferred Units will be structurally subordinated to all existing and future debt obligations of the partnership’s subsidiaries that are not guarantors of
the New LP Preferred Units and any capital stock of the partnership’s subsidiaries that are not guarantors held by others as to the payment of distributions and amounts payable upon liquidation.
The issuance of any senior securities or additional parity securities (including additional series of Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units and any other obligations of BPY or New LP, as applicable, that rank on parity with such preferred units) would dilute the interests of the preferred unitholders and could affect the ability of the issuer to pay distributions on, redeem, or pay the liquidation preference on the Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units as applicable. Future issuances and sales of senior securities, parity securities or junior securities, or the perception that such issuances and sales could occur, may cause prevailing market prices for the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units to decline and may adversely affect the ability of the issuer of such preferred units to raise additional capital in the financial markets at times and prices favorable to it.
The declaration of distributions on the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units will be at the discretion of the applicable general partner.
The declaration of distributions on the Preferred Units will be at the discretion of the BPY General Partner and the declaration of distributions on the New LP Preferred Units will be at the discretion of the New LP General Partner. The preferred unitholders will not have a right to distributions on their units unless declared by the applicable general partner. The declaration of distributions will be at the discretion of such general partner even if BPY or New LP, as applicable, has sufficient funds, net of its liabilities, to pay such distributions. This may result in preferred unitholders not receiving the full amount of distributions that they expect to receive, or any distributions, and may make it more difficult to resell their preferred units or to do so at a price that the holder finds attractive. The applicable general partner will not allow payment of a distribution (i) unless there is sufficient cash available, (ii) which would render the issuer unable to pay its debts as and when they come due, or (iii) which, in the opinion of the general partner, would or might leave the issuer with insufficient funds to meet any future or contingent obligations. In addition, although unpaid distributions are cumulative, none of BPY or New LP is required to accumulate cash for the purpose of making distributions to the preferred units issued by it or any other preferred units it may issue, which may limit the cash available to make distributions on the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units, as applicable.
The payment of distributions under the Guarantee is limited and uncertain.
The payment of distributions under the Guarantee is limited to certain circumstances. Although the New LP Preferred Units carry cumulative dividends, New LP may not be in a position pursuant to law to declare and pay such distributions. While the payment of such distributions has been guaranteed by BPY, such Guarantee is only triggered when such distributions are declared by the general partner of New LP or, upon the redemption, retraction or liquidation, dissolution or winding-up of New LP. The tax treatment of a payment under the Guarantee may differ from the tax treatment of the payment if it had been made by New LP.
Payment under the Guarantee will also depend, to a large extent, on the receipt by BPY of sufficient funds from its indirect subsidiaries as BPY does not have any significant assets of its own. Each Guarantor has agreed pursuant to the Guarantee that, as long as distributions on New LP Preferred Units are in arrears, such Guarantor will not declare, pay, or set apart for payment, any dividends or distributions on any of its preferred securities if the full, cumulative distributions payable on the New LP Preferred Units are in arrears. A failure by a Guarantor to pay such distributions or dividends may have an adverse effect on BPY, New LP and the market value of the New LP Preferred Units.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units have extremely limited voting rights.
Except as set forth in the respective partnership agreements of BPY and New LP or as otherwise required by law, the preferred unitholders generally will have no voting rights. For example, New LP may sell, exchange or otherwise dispose of all or substantially all of its assets in a single transaction or a series of related transactions without the approval of the holders of New LP Preferred Units. Although the holders of New LP Preferred Units are entitled to limited protective voting rights with respect to certain matters, the New LP Preferred Units will generally vote as a separate class, or along with all other classes or series of the parity securities of New LP or other preferred units that New LP may issue upon which like voting rights have been conferred and are exercisable. As a result, the voting rights of holders of New LP Preferred Units may be significantly diluted, and the holders of such other classes or series of parity securities of New LP that New LP may issue in the future, may be able to control or significantly influence the outcome of any vote.
The terms of the current and future indebtedness of BPY and/or New LP and our operating entities or their subsidiaries currently do or may, among other things, restrict such entity’s ability to make distributions on the preferred units issued by it or to redeem the preferred units issued by it.
Distributions will only be paid if the distribution is not restricted or prohibited by law or the terms of any senior securities of the issuer of the Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units, including current and future indebtedness. The instruments governing the terms of current or future financing or the refinancing of any borrowings of BPY and/or New LP and our operating entities or their subsidiaries currently do or may contain covenants that restrict, among other things, such issuer’s ability to make distributions on or redeem the preferred units issued by it. The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units place no restrictions on the ability of their respective issuer to incur indebtedness containing such restrictive covenants.
Your ability to transfer the Preferred Units and/or the New LP Preferred Units at a time or price you desire may be limited by the absence of an active trading market.
Since the Preferred Units have no stated maturity date, holders seeking liquidity of their Preferred Units as well as holders seeking liquidity of their New LP Preferred Units prior to their maturity date will be limited to selling their preferred units in the secondary market absent redemption by the issuer of such units. We may not be able to maintain an active trading market on the Nasdaq Stock Market (the “Nasdaq”) and/or the Toronto Stock Exchange (the “TSX”) for the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units may not develop or, even if it develops, may not last, in which case the trading price of such preferred units could be adversely affected and your ability to transfer your preferred units will be limited. Additionally, the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units may trade at prices lower than $25.00. The trading price of such preferred units would depend on many factors, including:
•prevailing interest rates;
•the market for similar securities;
•general economic and financial market conditions;
•the corporate credit ratings of BPY and New LP, as applicable, the credit ratings of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units and the corporate credit ratings of the Guarantors and their securities;
•BPY’s, New LP’s and any of the Guarantor’s issuance of debt or other preferred securities or the incurrence of additional indebtedness; and
•BPY’s, New LP’s and any of the Guarantor’s financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Market interest rates may adversely affect the value of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units.
One of the factors that will influence the price of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units will be the distribution yield on the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units (as a percentage of the price of such preferred units) relative to market interest rates. An increase in market interest rates may lead holders of such preferred units to expect a higher distribution yield, and higher interest rates would likely increase the issuer’s borrowing costs and potentially decrease funds available for distribution to the limited partners of such issuer, including the holders of the applicable preferred units. Accordingly, higher market interest rates could cause the market price of the preferred units to decrease. None of BPY or New LP has control over a number of factors, including economic, financial and political events, that impact market fluctuations in interest rates, which have in the past and may in the future experience volatility.
Redemption may adversely affect your return on the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units.
On or after certain specified dates, BPY and New LP will have the right, at their option, to redeem at a price of $25.00 per preferred unit, plus an amount equal to all accumulated and unpaid distributions thereon to, but excluding, the date fixed for redemption, whether or not declared, some or all of the preferred units issued by them, in accordance with the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units. In addition, prior to a certain specified date, BPY and New LP may redeem the preferred units issued by them after the occurrence of a ratings event, in accordance with the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units, at a price of $25.50 per unit, plus declared and unpaid distributions. BPY and New LP will also be able to redeem all but not less than all of the Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units, as applicable, following the occurrence of a change of control triggering event, a delisting transaction triggering event and/or a change in tax law out of funds legally available for such redemption, at a redemption price in cash of $25.00 per unit plus an amount equal to all
accumulated and unpaid distributions thereon to, but excluding, the date of redemption, whether or not declared. To the extent that the issuer redeems the preferred units issued by it at times when prevailing interest rates may be relatively low compared to rates at the time of issuance of the such preferred units, you may not be able to reinvest the redemption proceeds in a comparable security at an effective interest rate as high as the distribution rate of the applicable preferred units.
Upon a change of control triggering event or a delisting transaction triggering event, the issuer is not required to redeem the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units, and it may not be able to redeem such preferred units or pay the increased distribution rate per annum if it fails to redeem them.
The respective issuer of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units is not required to redeem them, and even if it should decide to redeem them, since such preferred units rank pari passu with the parity securities of such issuer, and junior to the senior securities of such issuer and to all of the existing and future indebtedness of such issuer, upon a change of control triggering event or a delisting transaction triggering event, the issuer may not have sufficient financial resources available or be permitted under its existing and future indebtedness to redeem its preferred units, or pay the increased distribution rate per annum in accordance with the terms of such preferred units. Even if the issuer is able to pay the increased distribution rate per annum, increasing the per annum distribution rate by 5.00% may not be sufficient to compensate the preferred unitholders for the impact of the change of control triggering event or a delisting transaction triggering event on the market price of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units.
BPY’s and New LP’s ability to issue parity securities and ability to incur additional indebtedness in the future could adversely affect the rights of the preferred unitholders.
The Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units rank pari passu with parity securities issued by their respective issuer. Such issuer is allowed to issue parity securities without any vote of the holders of the Preferred Units and New LP Preferred Units, as applicable, except where the cumulative distributions on such preferred units or any parity securities issued by such issuer are in arrears. The issuance of any parity securities would have the effect of reducing the amounts available to the holders of the preferred units upon the liquidation, dissolution or winding-up if it does not have sufficient funds to pay all liquidation preferences of the applicable preferred units and other parity securities in full. It also would reduce amounts available to make distributions if the issuer does not have sufficient funds to pay distributions on all outstanding parity securities. In addition, future issuances and sales of parity securities by the issuer or the perception that such issuances and sales or entry could occur, may cause prevailing market prices for the Preferred Units and/or New LP Preferred Units, as applicable, to decline and may adversely affect BPY’s and/or New LP’s ability to raise additional capital in the financial markets at times and prices favorable to it.
In addition, the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units do not limit the ability of their respective issuers to incur indebtedness. As a result, BPY, New LP and their respective subsidiaries may incur indebtedness that will rank senior to the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units, respectively. The incurrence of indebtedness or other liabilities that will rank senior to the applicable preferred units may reduce the amount available for distributions and the amount recoverable by holders of such preferred units.
Under certain limited circumstances, the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units may change without your consent or approval.
Under the terms of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units, at any time following a tax event, the issuer of such preferred units may, without the consent of any holders, vary the terms of such preferred units such that they remain securities, or exchange such preferred units for new securities, which would eliminate the substantial probability that their issuer or any successor entity would be required to pay any additional amounts with respect to such preferred units as a result of a change in tax law in accordance with the terms of such preferred units. However, the exercise by the issuer of this right is subject to certain conditions, including that the terms considered in the aggregate cannot be less favorable to the applicable holders of such preferred units than the terms of the preferred units prior to being varied or exchanged.
A change in the rating of the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units could adversely affect their market price.
Rating agencies revise their ratings from time to time and could lower or withdraw any rating issued with respect to the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units. Any real or anticipated downgrade or withdrawal of any ratings could have an adverse effect on the market price or liquidity of such Preferred Units or New LP Preferred Units.
Ratings reflect only the views of the issuing rating agency or agencies and are not recommendations to purchase, sell or hold any particular security, and there is no assurance that any rating will apply for any given period of time or that a rating
may not be adjusted or withdrawn. In addition, ratings do not reflect market prices or suitability of a security for a particular investor, and any future rating of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units may not reflect all risks related to BPY and New LP and their respective business or the structure or market value of the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units, as applicable. The assignment of a new rating that is lower than the existing rating or a downgrade or potential downgrade in the rating assigned to BPY, New LP, their respective subsidiaries, the Preferred Units, the New LP Preferred Units or any of its other securities could adversely affect the trading price and liquidity of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units.
None of BPY or New LP can be sure that any rating agency will maintain its rating once issued. None of BPY or New LP undertakes any obligation to obtain a rating, maintain the rating once issued or to advise the preferred unitholders of any change in ratings. A failure to obtain a rating or a negative change in a rating once issued could have an adverse effect on the market price or liquidity of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units.
Rating agencies may change rating methodologies, and their ratings may not reflect all risks.
The rating agencies that currently or may in the future publish a rating for BPY, New LP, the Preferred Units or the New LP Preferred Units may from time to time in the future change the methodologies that they use for analyzing securities with features similar to the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units. If the rating agencies change their practices for rating securities in the future, and the ratings of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units are subsequently lowered, the trading price and liquidity of the Preferred Units and the New LP Preferred Units could be adversely affected.