At a Glance
San Francisco, CA, and Denver, CO
Industrial real estate management
Although he changed the trajectory of his career, Edward Nekritz never lost focus on his legal background. Instead, he brought it along with him. The former attorney for Mayer Brown now serves as the chief legal officer, general counsel, and corporate secretary for Prologis, one of the world’s best-known industrial real estate investment trusts, and his work brokering contracts, overseeing transactions, and managing risk helps steer the company—even amid the hubbub of a recent merger.
Active in 22 countries in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia, Prologis is the only company specializing in warehouse development that operates on four continents, Nekritz says. The company produces a high-quality product for its 4,000-plus customer base, offering 600 million square feet of distribution space in key markets on those continents. “We have an unparalleled platform to serve our customers at the highest level,” Nekritz says.
Part of that service includes sustainability, which Nekritz says is a part of the firm’s daily culture. Prologis established the Green Path for its employees, encouraging environmental awareness of energy and water use, procurement, and waste production in the daily operations of the company. The other elements of Prologis’s sustainability initiative include maximizing the energy efficiency of the facilities it builds, minimizing its ecological impact, and conserving natural resources. As a leader in the field, Prologis is involved in setting standards for environmental stewardship in warehouse development on an international scale.
Nekritz’s history with the company stems back to his time with Mayer Brown, where he spent five years of his legal career. During the latter part of his time at the firm, Nekritz worked on corporate-real estate projects for Prologis, and in 1995 he left Mayer Brown and—as a familiar face to the company—joined Prologis in 1998 as its first attorney and general counsel. The chief legal counsel has since witnessed the firm grow from fewer than 100 to more than 1,300 employees. “To grow up with the company has been both exciting and rewarding,” Nekritz says.
As an integral part of the business, Nekritz works on private-equity projects, structuring transactions, and contract reviews and negotiations. He is a member of the executive management team and leads a legal department of 18 attorneys around the globe. He also oversees global risk-management and investment services. Like many companies and industries in 2008, Prologis took a hit from the economy, but though the firm had to halt all development for a time in order to strengthen its balance sheet, Nekritz says it continued to provide exceptional service to its customers.
In June, Prologis experienced a kind of corporate renaissance when the company merged with AMB Property Corporation, one of its former competitors. Nekritz says the merger and subsequent integration process has given the combined company the opportunity to create a truly new identity for Prologis. According to him, the company is focused on shaping the preeminent global real estate organization—with one of the strongest balance sheets in the industry. “If you’re going to grow as a company, you have to take risks,” Nekritz says, “and Prologis takes calculated risks.” ABQ