New Gen: What You Don't Know About One of LA's Big Value-Add Investment Executives
Photo: Here with wife Whitney on Oahu
Title: Managing Director, Watt Investment Partners
What that means: Adam and Watt Investment managing partner Jennifer McElyea co-manage a platform seeded by the Watt family to invest in value-add and opportunistic real estate. Watt Cos is a 65-year-old real estate investment firm based in LA with more than 8M SF of office and industrial space and 50 shopping centers in its portfolio, among other assets. The company remains family run.
Most recent deal: Bought a 100k SF industrial building in South Salt Lake City, Utah, which the company plans to convert to residential use.
Hometown: Born in Denver, grew up in Scottsdale, AZ
First job: Coaching soccer camps through high school and college.
Athletic prowess: Adam played soccer at Stanford, where he earned a degree in economics. He also played some minor league soccer in San Francisco after graduating. “I found out quickly I wasn’t good enough.”
Other education: MBA in real estate finance at UCLA
First adult job: Investment banking in San Francisco.
Photo: With Whitney in Tavarua, Fiji
Family: Married Whitney on Christmas Day last year in Thailand.
Power couple: Whitney’s a chef. She has done a lot of work for Gordon Ramsey on Master Chef. She’s the one who teaches contestants how to make complicated cuisine the day before a competition.
Hours on the job: “It’s similar for all of us,” he says. “I come in early, I am home for dinner and then I’m working after dinner.”
Free time: Adam is obsessed with surfing.
Exotic travel: Adam loves the Mentawai Islands in Indonesia for surfing.
Favorite movie: City of God
Favorite song of all time: The Weight, by The Band
Favorite vacation destination: Tavarua, Fiji.
Startling fact: Proud owner of a black 150cc Vespa.