July 31, 2017

32 Universities Competed for $50,000 in Total Prizes from Altus Group, NAREIT, NCREIF

*Not for Wire Distribution*

WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 31, 2017) – Three students from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business have been declared the winners of the 2016 Real Confidence™ University Challenge, ending the second annual competition in which over 200 students from 32 universities in North America gained hands-on learning experience in public and private commercial real estate investing. The University of Chicago student team managed the best portfolio with a return just short of 24 percent over four quarters and won the $30,000 grand prize.

Each university team allocated $1 billion in theoretical capital among a variety of commercial real estate investment opportunities found within the public and private equity and the public and private debt sectors. The performance of each sector’s weighted investment selection was calculated with its respective benchmark return data provided by NAREIT®, NCREIF®, Markit® and Giliberto-Levy Commercial Mortgage Performance Index℠.

“We are proud to partner with NAREIT and NCREIF to host this Challenge as it provides students with the opportunity to gain a better understanding of real estate investing in a rewarding and competitive way,” said Richard Kalvoda, Senior Executive Vice President at Altus Group. “Our goal with the Challenge is to help prepare the next generation of real estate professionals and we’re encouraged to see the number of schools participating in the Challenge continues to increase each year.”

The University of Chicago’s unique winning strategy focused on listed Mortgage REITs, splitting the allocation between commercial-financing and home-financing. With four larger REITs comprising the majority of the commercial index, the students anticipated this would present opportunities for additional debt deals and financing. For home-financing, they expected the mortgage-backed security market would benefit from the Fed as it continued its programmatic reinvestments. The University of Chicago’s total return results were an impressive 23.64 percent, compared with the 2016 University Challenge index at only 5.20 percent, as nine schools posted negative portfolio returns for the competition.

“The Real Confidence University Challenge helps students understand the benefits that REITs and other real estate bring to investment portfolios, in terms of increasing returns and reducing risk,” said NAREIT President and CEO Steven A. Wechsler. “The students who participate in this annual competition gain hands-on investment experience that provides a valuable supplement to their classroom knowledge.”

The University of Chicago is the overall winner, but the $2,500 quarterly winners for top public and private sector performance included:  University of Connecticut (x2), Brigham Young University (x2), University of San Diego (x2), University of Miami and Utah State University. While the University of Chicago team never won an individual quarter, they maintained a consistent pace of returns landing a 4.8 percent gap over the University of San Diego who came in second.

“It has been great to see the participation grow from last year,” said Dan Dierking, President, NCREIF. “The Real Confidence University Challenge provides a unique approach to educate future professionals and leaders of this industry. It gives students a platform to engage in investment decisions while learning the importance of data and research to support those decisions. We look forward to continued growth in the program, and our partnership with Altus Group and NAREIT.”

Below are the final portfolio returns of the top 10 student teams that participated in the 2016 Real Confidence University Challenge:

Rank University Final
1 University of Chicago 23.64%
2 University of San Diego 18.84%
3 Utah State University 18.31%
4 University of Connecticut 17.37%
5 Harvard University 15.56%
6 Pepperdine University 14.26%
7 Brigham Young University 13.82%
8 Southern Methodist University 13.32%
9 University of Wisconsin-Madison 11.78%
10 Georgetown University 11.10%

Additional final rankings and portfolio details can be found at http://www.realconfidence.com/challenge/2016/.


The Real Confidence University Challenge is made possible by Altus Group Limited (“Altus Group”) (TSX: AIF), in collaboration with the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT®) and the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF®).

The 2017 Real Confidence University Challenge is currently underway with 38 schools and over 210 students participating. This year’s team with the best performance will be awarded $30,000, with quarterly prizes of $2,500 awarded to the university with the top public and private sector performance of their portfolio.

Student teams from the following universities are currently participating in the 2017 Real Confidence University Challenge that will end in December 2017:

·        Baruch College – CUNY

·        Brigham Young University

·        Cornell University

·        Florida State University

·        Harvard University

·        Hollins University

·        Indiana University

·        Johns Hopkins University

·        Lehigh University

·        Middle Tennessee State University

·        Monmouth University

·        Nova Southeastern University

·        Penn State University

·        Rice University

·        San Diego State University

·        Southern Methodist University

·        Temple University

·        Pepperdine University

·        Texas A&M University

·        Texas Tech University

·        The College of William & Mary

·        The Ohio State University

·        University of Chicago

·        University of Cincinnati

·        University of Connecticut

·        University of Denver

·        University of Georgia

·        University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign

·        University of Miami

·        University of Missouri – Kansas City

·        University of Northern Iowa

·        University of Regensburg

·        University of San Diego

·        University of South Alabama

·        University of Texas at Arlington

·        Utah State University

·        Villanova University

·        York University

Students and industry professionals can follow the 2017 Challenge at http://www.realconfidence.com/university/.


About Altus Group Limited

Altus Group Limited is a leading provider of independent advisory services, software and data solutions to the global commercial real estate industry. Our businesses, Altus Analytics and Altus Expert Services, reflect decades of experience, a range of expertise, and technology-enabled capabilities. Our solutions empower clients to analyze, gain market insight and recognize value on their real estate investments. Headquartered in Canada, we have approximately 2,300 employees around the world, with operations in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Our clients include some of the world’s largest real estate industry participants across a variety of sectors. Altus Group pays a quarterly dividend of $0.15 per share and our shares are traded on the TSX under the symbol AIF.

For more information on Altus Group, please visit: www.altusgroup.com.


About the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts® (NAREIT)

NAREIT®, the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts®, is the worldwide representative voice for REITs, or Real Estate Investment Trusts, and publicly traded real estate companies with an interest in U.S. real estate and capital markets. NAREIT represents a large and diverse industry including Equity REITs, which own commercial properties, Mortgage REITs, which invest in mortgage securities, REITs traded on major stock exchanges, public non-listed REITs and private REITs. U.S. REITs collectively own nearly $2 trillion of real estate assets and, by making investment in commercial real estate available in the form of stock, NAREIT’s more than 200 REIT members enable all investors – importantly, small investors – to achieve what, once, only large institutions and the wealthy could.


About the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries® (NCREIF)

The National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF) is a non-profit trade association that serves the direct commercial real estate investment community whose members come together to address vital industry issues and to promote research on the asset class. NCREIF is dedicated to providing the institutional real estate industry with the highest standards of reliable, unbiased data, used for performance measurement, research, risk-return evaluation, and underwriting analysis in setting the foundation for sound investment decision making. In addition to producing performance indices for direct commercial real estate, NCREIF serves its membership – institutional investors, academics, appraisers, accountants and other real estate practitioners – through conferences, peer-group forums and education programs to establish best industry practices and encourage professional development.

forumContact us

Thank you for contacting us. we will get back to you shortly!

This site uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.
Click here for more information.