Dear Adventus Investors,
Please see the Report to Unitholders and the Q1 2020 update from Adventus’ management team.
In July 2017, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced potential options for changing the taxation of investment income earned by private corporations. The proposed changes were strongly opposed by many stakeholders and, in October 2017, Minister Morneau announced that changes would be made to the proposed new rules and that draft legislation would be released as part of Budget 2018. The resulting highly anticipated Budget was tabled by Minister Morneau on February 27, 2018. While Budget 2018 has scaled back many of the proposed measures from the July 2017 Consultation Paper, it has moved forward with various amendments to the Income Tax Act1 that will affect small business corporations in Canada. The amendments with respect to passive income earned by a private corporation will still have an adverse effect on small business owners and may affect the way small business owners choose to invest their retained earnings. In particular, the effect of the changes on the small business deduction (“SBD”) will likely leave small business owners seeking tax-efficient options for the investment of corporate retained earnings that will reduce the impact of these changes.
Bill C-74, which contains the legislative provisions to implement the new passive income rules, received Royal Assent
on June 21, 2018
We are thrilled to highlight our Insurance Team and introduce a new section of our blog to partner with our investment updates. Our inhouse Insurance experts have over 100 years of combined experience in the business. We will be updating periodically with articles and information we believe is important to our clients.
On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. In response, we immediately paused on the multiple acquisitions we were working on and shifted our focus to mitigate the impact of the pandemic to our employees and tenants, and to ASH REIT’s broader business. We are pleased to report that we are on track to collect approximately 95% of April rents, and expect similar outcomes over the summer months.
Recently, the Canadian universities began announcing their plans for September 2020; we have provided an update on what we know and are shifting our operating focus to respond to an expected primarily online environment for the Fall term.
Amidst this uncertainty, we are starting to see some attractive opportunities emerge. With operations largely stabilized, we expect to resume our focus on completing accretive transactions over the coming months and we believe that there will be an opportunity to transact at attractive valuations.
Below is the link to our Management Report. In addition, we will be hosting a conference call to discuss our performance and outlook on Thursday, May 28, 2020 at 2:00 PM EDT – please register for the call using the link below.
Please let us know if you have any questions. Stay safe and take care
We are pleased to highlight the first quarter 2020 report for Alignvest Strategic Partners Fund. The Q1 update discusses performance over the past quarter and their thoughts going forward. As referenced, the estimate for April 2020 performance is 5.3% bringing the year-to-date performance of the Fund to -8.6%.
Additional information on the Alignvest Strategic Partners Fund can also be found on their website.
Q1 2020 ASPF Report
We are pleased to announce that Nancy Lockhart has been appointed as a Trustee of Alignvest Student Housing REIT, effective immediately.
Ms. Lockhart is a director of George Weston Limited, Choice Properties REIT and Atrium Mortgage Investment Corporation. Previously, Ms. Lockhart was the Chair of Gluskin Sheff + Associates, Inc., and a director of Loblaw Companies Limited, Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation, Retirement Residence REIT and Barrick Gold Corporation. Additionally, Ms. Lockhart was formerly the Chief Administrative Officer of Frum Development Group and a Vice President of Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation. Currently, she is the Chair Emeritus of Crow’s Theatre Company and Director of The Royal Conservatory of Music, and was previously Chair of the Ontario Science Centre, President of the Canadian Club of Toronto, Chair of the Canadian Film Centre, Director of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health Foundation and Director of The Canada Merit Scholarship Foundation. Ms. Lockhart was awarded the Order of Ontario in 2006.
Flash Report #3
Despite our next scheduled update not being until July, the General Partners (GP) of StoreWest Dufferin LP felt it was important to communicate with everyone considering the current uncertainty surrounding COVID-19. We will cover off both segments of the business in order.
This business is currently open and operational. However, in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic, we have made adjustments on an operational basis to ensure we are adhering to current and evolving provincial guidelines. First, effective March 30, we have adjusted our hours of business to 8AM to 8PM in order to provide more flexibility for our employees in these extraordinary times. The safety of our employees and customers is the top priority. This adjusment has allowed employees to more easily arrange transportation and childcare for their families, while allowing us to stay open and maintain a properly staffed work environment. This change was implemented only after considerable review of operational data and analysis of the highest income-generating hours.
At Great White Car and Truck Wash, we have been blessed with a very dedicated staff, many of whom have been with us since we opened. While the car wash is considered a low risk environment with respect to the virus, their loyalty and reliability has been exceptional. To offset the overall reduction of working hours available to our employees, we have implemented a temporary $2.00/hour raise. We want to ensure that the efforts of our staff during this difficult time are being recognized and appreciated, and we anticipate that these changes will help them weather the challenges of the situation.
As we analyze government protocols and newly implemented rules, our partners have taken the firm stance that we are presently classified as an essential service. Car washes have generally fallen into this classification and our truck wash with 90+ fleets under contract only strengthens this point. Great White is currently providing needed cleaning and washing services to a wide variety of essential companies including food transportation companies, towing companies, utility companies and Alberta Health Services. We will continue to monitor the situation, and, should this categorization change, we will inform all stakeholders of the same. Otherwise we will continue to operate the wash and keep our staff employed.
Please find below the most recent update on Alignvest Student Housing. Management wanted to share the latest numbers regarding the lease up for the 2020/2021 school year and the collection of April rents. In summary, we are ahead of where we were last year with respect to leasing for the upcoming school year. Our properties are proving to be highly desirable and some of the feedback received has been that higher quality properties are even more in favour during these times of uncertainty. With respect to April rents, we are tracking to get over 97% of rent cheques. Although lower than usual, it is still far above any amount that would have management concerned about cash flow.