About ten years ago to this day, I had my first meeting in Los Angeles with five investment professionals with Oaktree Capital who would eventually become board members and founding shareholders of STORE Capital. Previously, I had been part of the leadership teams and had helped take public two prior successful NYSE-listed net lease REITs. The first of these was Franchise Finance Corporation Of America (FFCA), which had been founded by STORE’s Chairman, Mort Fleischer in 1980. We listed the company in 1994 and were the first net lease REIT to achieve an investment-grade corporate rating. Between the time we listed the company and the time we sold it in 2001 to GE Capital, FFCA was the nation’s largest publicly traded net lease REIT. Later, the company would become the centerpiece of GE Franchise Finance, which was the leader for many years in providing loans and net lease capital, predominantly to chain restaurant operators. Two years after we sold FFCA, Mort and I started Spirit Finance, which we listed on the NYSE in 2004. Unlike FFCA, which had a relatively narrow investment mandate (restaurants, convenience stores and automotive parts and service), Spirit would focus on a broader array of “operationally essential” assets. We would later sell that company to a consortium of investors led by Macquarie Group. Had you been an investor in either FFCA or Spirit for their duration as public companies, your compound annual rates of return would have been 10.3% and 19.7% respectively, with both returns outpacing those of the broader REIT market.

STORE opened its doors for business in May 2011, with a founding group that included Mary Fedewa, STORE’s Chief Operating Officer, Cathy Long, our Chief Financial Officer and me. Our founding shareholders included Oaktree Capital, the Arizona Retirement System and our Chairman, Mort Fleischer. Our thought on STORE, which stands for Single Tenant Operational Real Estate, was to restrict our investment activity to just profit center real estate. While we liked the idea of “operationally essential” real estate, which we conceived at Spirit, we ultimately decided that we could not tell enough about how valuable or essential the real estate is without having a property-level profit and loss statement. Hence, we could tell little about the essentiality of cost centers, such as logistics assets, data centers, medical offices or call centers. As a result, we elected to stick to pure Single Tenant Operational Real Estate, or profit centers. Here, not only could we tell how essential the assets were by virtue of their profitability, but we could create net lease contracts better than the underlying credit of the tenants themselves. In finance terms, we could tranche the credit by owning critical profit center locations that would provide us contractual claims that were more senior to other creditors. The idea was to create investment-grade net lease contracts from non-rated tenants and then to further reduce risk through sector-leading portfolio diversification.

Today, STORE has grown to over 2,500 properties in 49 states that are leased to more than 500 tenants. Our Scottsdale, Arizona office is a stones’ throw away from the building that housed FFCA. In an irony not unusual in America, our present office was originally constructed to house the operations of GE Franchise Finance, which has since been disbanded and sold off in pieces upon the dissolution of much of GE Capital. Up until the recent COVID pandemic, our portfolio performed as one might expect an investment-grade portfolio to perform. Taken individually, our tenants and the real estate we hold may not be investment-grade rated. But, in looking beyond such trees to the entire forest, the idea we had in starting STORE was that the forest should be the best investment-grade tree collective we had ever assembled.

Our Mission

Prior to starting STORE, our companies have had all sorts of customers, from large investment-grade companies to first-time restaurant franchisees. By 2010, when we were conceiving STORE, industry consolidation had created a sea of middle market and larger non-rated companies. In total, we believe the number of companies in our marketplace to approximate 200,000, collectively employing real estate in their businesses having an aggregate valuation of more than $3 trillion. Our experience was that these types of businesses needed a company like STORE. We call such companies “bank-dependent” companies, because they had no access to the bond markets. For them, there is no efficient and flexible commercial mortgage market. There is no fixed rate financing I am aware of that extends beyond ten years. There is no assumable financing. And what financing exists is often not readily modifiable. A lease, for such companies, can lower their cost of capital by displacing bank debt and the high cost investor equity typically required. A lease with STORE could also elevate corporate flexibility by offering assumability and property substitution rights. Beyond this, STORE endeavors to help tenants where possible to expand profitable locations and close underperforming locations. Prior to starting STORE, our founding team had seen the power of these ideas at our predecessor companies.

At STORE, we believe we can help our tenants, advance the opportunities for their staffs and improve the communities in which they live. Today, STORE’s 504 customers employ over 2.5 million across an estimated 36,000 locations. Approximately three quarters of our tenants have revenues in excess of $50 million, with our weighted dollar invested in real estate leased to tenants having revenues approaching $850 million. Nearly all our tenants operate in essential, highly relevant industries in which there exist no dominant players or material competition from larger, investment-grade participants. In 2019, this vital group of businesses grew their average revenues by over 12% and expanded their employee base by more than 300,000, with most of that growth arising from expansion. STORE helped make this happen. We are proud of our role as a leading contributor to middle market and larger company real estate capital formation and its impact on our national economic betterment.

Market Inefficiencies

From our beginning, STORE made a choice to focus our real estate investment activity on tenants who need us. Investment-grade companies, of which there are scarcely thirty that employ freestanding profit center locations, do not need us. They could elect instead to issue highly efficient unsecured notes, rather than lease their real estate. And, there is a veritable conga line of family offices and high net worth individuals willing to invest in real estate occupied by such companies. If a large REIT or institutional participant feels good about their cost of equity or access to investment-grade borrowings, they shouldn’t; the many retail and family office investors who are active in the investment-grade tenant space are generally willing to lever higher, accept lower rates of return and can make use of depreciation tax shields, which barely have any value at all to investors in companies like STORE. Plus, more recently, institutional investors have emerged who employ high levels of investment-grade rated leverage to efficiently access this market.

I personally believe real estate leased to investment-grade tenants to be inefficiently priced. And there is a price to pay to target such tenants. The cost per square foot of the real estate tends to be higher. The leases are often shorter. There is a near universal absence of property level financial reporting. There are limited possibilities to have master leases, which are the only real means to assure investment diversity within multiple assets leased to the same tenant. The investment yields are materially less, as are the annual lease escalations. And, to add insult to injury, the odds of having a BBB-rated tenant retain their investment-grade credit rating after ten years are less than five in ten. I have never been in favor of sacrificing so much contract quality in order to have a 46% likelihood in ten years (or a 26% chance over twenty years) of having a tenant with the same or better credit rating. All of this means that companies chasing investment-grade tenants will statistically be eventually climbing up a down escalator, because contract qualities (and therefore real estate values) can be expected to degrade over time. This is precisely what rating agency credit migration statistics will show.

There are many reasons for inefficient investment-grade net lease pricing. Foremost among these is that the investment-grade real estate markets are generally guided by real estate brokers with assets sold generally in small lots to non-institutional, less sophisticated investors. The brokers make their money from the sellers of the real estate, generally leaving the buyers with no real fiduciary representation. This is just the starting point for poor interest alignment.

Investment-grade tenants also have interests that are misaligned with those of their landlords. For those few companies having investment-grade ratings, a net lease contract is effectively a debt substitute, given that investment-grade companies all have access to the unsecured note marketplace. So, if one were to ask the obvious question about who would ever pay a 6+ cap rate when they could historically borrow at 4%, four major reasons would be as follows:

  1. Companies can forego hiring a real estate department and essentially outsource real estate construction and site selection to developers and thereby effectively capitalize the cost of development.
  2. Companies can have the buildings constructed as “turnkey” projects, whereby extensive tenant improvements are included and financed in the lease.
  3. Companies often have shorter term leases that effectively give them “put options” to their landlords. Even with more sophisticated public real estate investment trusts, it is not uncommon to see newly developed properties leased to investment-grade tenants having primary lease terms of ten years or less.
  4. Companies generally write their own leases, often with favorable “go dark” clauses, no master leases, no cross-defaults and no unit-level financial reporting. Commonly, the leases are even double net, which leaves landlords responsible for the foundation, roof, walls and occasionally more. This can elevate landlord property costs.

Each of the above reasons for leasing places the tenant at odds with the landlord. However, there are two more reasons investment-grade tenants elect to lease that are not in conflict with their landlords:

  • Leasing offers an almost perpetual capital stack, thereby making it complementary to unsecured debt issue options.
  • Sometimes investment-grade tenants simply have no choice. They would like to be in a mall or shopping center that has been developed and the developer holds more of the negotiating cards (such assets are less likely to be represented in free-standing net lease portfolios).

In contrast, non-rated, bank dependent companies have strong financial and corporate flexibility motivations to have a landlord rather than a banker. The alignments of interest in this market are generally pure, which is a big reason why STORE ends up with better and longer contracts that are less likely to degrade over time.

In Michael Lewis’ bestselling book “The Big Short”, one of his protagonists, investor Steve Eisman, decides to depart his urban cocoon to travel to Florida, where he finds that home mortgage loans sold to investment banks were originated by brokers having no alignments of interest, with the proceeds given to borrowers having limited ability to pay. When reading this story, it dawned on me how few people made the effort to travel and witness the marketplace in action. Net lease real estate industry observers tend to assume that marketplaces are efficient, which is precisely what most mortgage-backed securities investors believed in 2007. What Mr. Eisman concluded was that misaligned incentives conspire against having an efficient marketplace. In the case of the net lease market, not only are there frequent misalignments of interest, but the motivations for leasing differ between investment-grade and non-rated companies.

Just to give you a flavor for this, in 2019, per Co-Star, there were 219 Walgreen’s sales exceeding $1.2 billion, of which about 195 were brokered sales (Co-Star does not get every sale but is the best database out there). Of the 219 transactions reported, about two thirds were individually sold. The average price per square foot for all the 2019 Walgreen’s transactions amounted to over $390. If one were to look at a rough approximation of construction cost, the building cost would amount to about $150 and the land and improvements would approximate 25% of the transaction, bringing the all-in price to $200 a square foot – certainly no more than $250 per square foot. So, the investors buying these assets, whether as a result of the high level of tenant improvements, high developer profits or other reasons, paid substantially above replacement cost for the assets (likely ranging from 50% – 100%). I am pointing this out because such high costs will likewise elevate the risk of loss upon lease maturity or tenant default and is why STORE takes the time to disclose the replacement costs of the assets we hold and also of the assets we buy each quarter.

You may be surprised at the sheer percentage of individual Walgreen’s sales in 2019 which are generally sold to smaller real estate investors. Of course, Walgreens is but one of the thirty or so investment-grade companies that employ extensive amounts of freestanding real estate, so such transactions occur with high levels of frequency. Given that such investors have far less diversity than larger institutional investors, they are eager to pay for “insurance” against loss by restricting their investment activity to investment-grade tenants. Such behavior was first described in the Prospect theory in 1979 by behavioral economists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky, which garnered a Nobel Prize in 2002. Essentially, the theory goes that investors are generally willing to trade off investment risks associated with higher predicted returns for assured returns, but that they will take on larger levels of risk to avoid loss recognition. This would certainly be so for smaller commercial real estate investors having comparatively low levels of portfolio diversity. If one includes perverse tax incentives (1031 exchanges will drive investors to accept even lower rates of return in search of safety), then the Prospect theory, from the vantage point of a sophisticated institutional investor, creates the final misalignment of interest. Why would STORE, with all the diversity we can muster, and with an ability to create an investment-grade portfolio, ever want to compete in a marketplace having misalignments of interest, together with pricing set by smaller investors seeking to pay up for what they believe to be assured returns?

Creating Alpha

Net lease companies that focus on a mix of investment-grade and non-rated tenants will tend to have a wide investment yield ranges owing to the difference in market yields between non-rated and rated tenants. The below model presumes a yield differential of 1.5% between non-rated and investment-grade net lease investments, which approximates historic auction market averages. Given that investment-grade tenant centric companies achieve blended quarterly investment yields approximating 6.5%, the table below illustrates that, at a 50% portfolio mix of investment-grade and non-rated tenants, investment-grade tenant investments would approximate a yield of 5.75%, with the non-rated tenant investments posting a yield of 7.25%. Given a fixed portfolio yield, the higher the blend of investment-grade tenants, the higher the investment grade yield.

STORE, in contrast, tends to have narrower overall yield differentials, given that we invest solely in profit center real estate employed by non-rated companies. With investment yields, or cap rates, which have approximated 7.9% since 2017, we could suffer a loss of 37% of our rents before we would realize the investment-grade yield of 5.75% in the above example. That would be the same thing as offering 74% of our tenants a permanent half-off sale the day we create the lease contract. Keep in mind that, with double the lease escalations, the margin of error for STORE simply gets bigger every single year. Keep in mind also that the margin for error only gets better over time the longer our portfolio has been within the margin for error. Finally, consider also that our median property-level fixed charge coverages have held steady at approximately 2:1 since we started STORE, which means that tenants can generally lose between 30% and 40% of sales before they can no longer afford their rents. Given these facts, I believe it highly unlikely that STORE’s investment approach over time will not yield higher overall returns after losses. That is the definition of risk-adjusted return superiority.

Historically, such cataclysmic permanent 37% rent reductions have never befallen STORE nor any other company we have led. Consider that from 2003 to 2012 a predecessor company that endured the Great Recession, Spirit Finance, invested $4.09 billion and reported in the company’s 2012 IPO that it had cumulatively experienced 7.5% of its portfolio having financial distress that resulted in contract losses. If benchmarked against a portfolio of investment-grade tenanted real estate, and assuming no losses on such a portfolio, the 7.5% cumulative contract default rate is well within the 37% tolerable loss differential noted earlier. We often describe ourselves as “value investors”, with an investment thesis designed to deliver higher risk-adjusted rates of return. That is what Alpha is all about.

The current COVID pandemic compelled a number of STORE tenants to temporarily curtail commerce, resulting in the most challenging quarterly performance we have ever experienced in our careers. No company, irrespective of credit rating, is built to sustain a business model having no business. For freestanding investment-grade tenant occupied properties, the impact was generally muted as a result of asset essentiality; the corporate credit ratings were far less material. Consider the following:

  • Home improvement stores, paint stores, dollar stores and pharmacies, to name just a few, often saw their fortunes rise during the pandemic. As a result, several investment-grade companies that dominate these sectors delivered strong rent collections to their landlords. Of course, non-rated companies in these same sectors also tended to perform well during the second quarter.
  • Similarly, for STORE, our manufacturing and retail tenants, which are generally pandemic-resistant, have performed highly, despite having no exposure to investment-grade tenants.

STORE has 65% of our investments centered in service sector tenants, which have been the most impacted by the COVID pandemic. Five service sectors (restaurants, health clubs, education, family entertainment and theaters) have accounted for a disproportionate amount of curtailed business and represent approximately three quarters of our recent rent deferral requests. In May, we collected just 60% of service sector rents, with the five most impacted sectors delivering approximately 40% of the rents owed for the month. Not surprisingly, since May, our results have steadily improved, with over 86% of cash rent collections for the month of August as essential sectors represented within our portfolio have reopened. Keep in mind that the deferral of 14% of our rents for August falls well within the yield margins for error against investment-grade real estate portfolios described earlier. In fact, at 86% rent collections, our portfolio yield approximates 7%, which is higher than the investment yields realized by investment-grade centric tenant peers on their recent investments. As tenant business reopenings continue, we expect that the spread between our portfolio yield and those of peer companies more focused on investment-grade tenants will simply get wider.

Within the net lease space, we have four peer companies having between 36% and 72% exposure to investment-grade tenants, with virtually all these highly rated tenants having paid timely rents during the pandemic. Partially as a result, these companies lead our sector in reported rents collected for July, with collections ranging from 91% to 99%. Given the same two major assumptions as our earlier example (a 6.5% investment rate – which approximates new investment activity -and a 1.5% spread between the yields realized from investment-grade and non-rated tenants), blended portfolio yields can be expected to approximate 6%, or reasonably below current approximate 7% portfolio yield realized by STORE. Put another way, STORE is a leader amongst net lease companies in collecting more cash per portfolio dollar invested during this unprecedented pandemic.

Using a similar approach to the preceding financial model shows the recent yields on cost for STORE’s portfolio versus our peer set as measured by our respective rent collections during the COVID pandemic from April through July. Important items to note include a current portfolio yield approximating 7%, with estimated monthly yields exceeding those of peer companies even during our worst months. With our current rent collection pace approaching 90%, the spread between our investment yields and those of our peers should rise as more essential sectors, such as education, fitness, family entertainment, theaters and restaurants reopen.

An important takeaway from the preceding analysis is that rent collections percentages alone are not a meaningful benchmark because they cannot be expected to drive AFFO growth and share price value. STORE was not created to have the highest rates of collections or even the lowest vacancy rates, though we have historically done well here. We conceived STORE from the outset to serve a broad market and create Alpha. Performance will always foremost be a function of corporate business model differences, with property risk-adjusted gross returns making the single biggest impact. That has been our history since we listed our first of three net lease companies on the New York Stock Exchange in 1994.

Our Business Model

Equity rates of return are the single largest contributor to Alpha creation. Sometimes real estate investors can overlook this fact in favor of “net asset value” or other measurements. In 1999, I devised a shortcut for computing corporate pre-tax current equity returns called the V-Formula. The first article I wrote on this tool was awarded the Lybrand Gold Medal by the Institute of Management Accountants. The formula was inspired by the notion of Economic Value Added (hence the “V” in the formula was intended to stand for “Value”), which was devised by Stern Stewart and Company and which today is a tool that has been adopted by Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) in evaluating corporate efficiency. I have since written a number of articles that have expanded on the V-Formula, including our STORE University video series, which is available on STORE’s website. For a net lease REIT, a simplified version of the V-Formula would work like this:

(Portfolio Yield x Operating Profit Margin – % of Borrowings x Interest Rate)

÷ % of Equity = Current Pre-Tax ROE

A current pre-tax equity rate of return is essentially an Adjusted Funds from Operations (AFFO) yield. So, estimating STORE’s AFFO yield at cost at the end of 2019 would pencil out as follows:

(8% x 92.6% – 43.5% x 4.3%) ÷ 56.5% = 9.8%, or a 10.2X AFFO multiple

There is more to a REIT’s rate of return than simply AFFO yields. Annually, we will have rent increases, losses of rents due to tenant non-performance and revenue increases or decreases arising from recycling asset sales proceeds. We will have external growth that is driven by issuing new equity and then investing that equity in ways that are accretive to existing stockholders. With all that said, the preceding AFFO yield computation tends to be the single biggest driver of investor rates of return and Alpha creation.

How does our business model compare with our peer companies? STORE tends to have the highest portfolio yields, which is the largest contributing V-Formula variable. Our operating profit margin is not the highest but is close. Our leverage is in line with similar companies and we have historically had the highest spreads between our lease yields and our cost of borrowings. In terms of asset sales, we are among the few net lease companies to have regularly sold assets and been able to reinvest the proceeds at higher yields. This has the same impact as a higher lease escalation rate and is easier to achieve with our directly originated portfolio than with a portfolio of lower-yielding investment-grade-tenanted assets acquired in the auction marketplace. As noted earlier, our annual lease escalations have been the highest in our sector and the average drag from asset non-performance has not historically been material. Moreover, the margin of error we have relative to peer companies having investment-grade centric tenant strategies is very high, as was illustrated earlier. With the highest investment yields, our breakeven investment AFFO multiple of 10.2X as shown above is the lowest among our peer set. That fact has generally enabled us to have among the widest spreads between our investment AFFO yields and our traded AFFO yields, which has made our external growth also among the most efficient in our space. Finally, we have historically had the lowest dividend payout ratio among our peer companies which has provided our stockholders with enhanced return compounding. We have been mindful of each of these business model elements and their impact on long-term investor returns from our inception.

Standing the Test of Time

Direct tenant relationships are the cornerstone of STORE’s long-term business model. Having direct relationships contributes to sector-leading transaction granularity and portfolio diversity. Direct relationships means that we own most of our own deal flow, which has enabled us to make investments having yields in excess of those in the auction marketplace. At the heart of STORE’s approach is our value investing approach: To buy real estate at prices and yields our investors would be unlikely to see and with lease documentation they would be unlikely to obtain. Given the real estate adage that “money is made when you buy, not when you sell”, we can generally sell real estate for 10% or more the day after we create a lease. The implications of this ability to create value are many, from added return potential to added lease contract credit enhancement to incremental margins for error. The impact of direct originations, and the direct tenant relationships that result, can be readily seen, even in STORE’s recent results. During the challenging second quarter, we were able to be a leader among our peers in reporting agreements with tenants representing 93% of rent deferral requests. In these difficult times, it was not uncommon for net lease companies to lack documented tenant agreements for eventual rent repayment for 70% or more of the rent deferrals granted .

One obvious result of having so many direct tenant relationships is that STORE originates nearly all our own leases. In effect, we are a net lease contract creation company. Apart from the elevated gross returns we can realize, direct originations mean that we have the ability to make several important decisions with each transaction. The first consideration is the price we are willing to pay for the real estate. The second is the initial investment yield we would like to realize. A third important consideration is the lease term. A fourth is the degree and timing of lease escalations. Finally, we are able to guide other important documentation attributes, from master leases to financial reporting to assignability, “go dark” provisions, credit enhancements and more. For peer companies often engaged in the acquisition of leases originated by others, there is typically but one major consideration: the yield to be realized. The other important lease attributes generally must be accepted without modification. One way to measure the degree of contract creation is to look to the balance sheets of STORE and peer companies for intangible lease assets, which are recorded when making real estate investments where there is already a contract present. STORE has the lowest level of lease intangibles as might be assumed with our direct origination approach, which we illustrate in our quarterly investor presentations.

Direct originations have enabled STORE to have the most granular and diverse investment portfolio among our net lease peers. It us not uncommon for us to close a transaction every day and a half given our small transaction sizes. The study of the importance of diversity garnered Dr. Harry Markowitz a Nobel and is central to our thesis of creating an investment-grade forest. Direct originations have also enabled STORE to have the most unit-level financial reporting (we know how profitable each location is) and the most master leases (we can assure diversity within a tenant by binding all of the unit-level profits in a single lease), which are both essential to the creation of senior contracts. Importantly, we also have the longest lease terms, which we have maintained at a 14-year average over the past five years. We have uniquely achieved this by regularly extending master leases as we incorporate new investments arising from repeat business. We likewise have, by far, the least amount of leases maturing over the next five years, which is especially important in challenging economic times. The idea behind these many qualitative portfolio efforts is to reduce the long-term likelihood of net lease contract degradation. We are designing STORE to stand the many tests of time.

I would argue that we have the single best constructed balance sheet in the net lease space owing to our borrowing diversity and resultant elevated optionality. Our unencumbered asset borrowing is a mere 22% today, which may be the lowest across all REITs. Given our general ability to create value in excess of our investment cost, our unencumbered leverage today approximates just 12% of estimated unencumbered asset value. Our ability to achieve this is made possible by our (constant) 70% master trust leverage. We designed the first real estate master trust in 2005 and it has since been commonly replicated, most recently with a portfolio of Amazon fulfillment centers. The master trust is simply a series of secured notes that are backed by a growing underlying pool of diverse assets. In our case, we have about a third of our assets devoted to this AAA and A+ rated non-recourse funding, which accompanies materially better prepayment optionality than what is available with unsecured term note issuances. In turn, we also take care to make investments that will qualify for inclusion into the master trust asset pool for potential future note issuances. This discipline is important for us at STORE to make certain that we are not reliant on unsecured borrowings to finance assets not readily financeable anywhere else. The master trust, in turn, is a firewall for our shareholders and full-recourse noteholders that enables the company to endure financial stresses well beyond those that could ever be endured by any of our peers having higher levels of unencumbered asset leverage and with unencumbered assets potentially less easily directed to other efficient borrowing strategies. The benefits of this vehicle to our equity investors and unsecured noteholders are substantial and undeniable. Such positive attributes, over the long term, stand to bestow on STORE competitive cost of capital advantages.

One cannot talk about risk-adjusted performance without also talking about time. As we approach our tenth anniversary at STORE, we have varyingly had both high and low costs of capital based on our share valuation. A higher cost of capital sends a message to business leaders to refrain from investing and we have paid attention to such messages in our history of leading public companies. A low cost of capital sends a message to “buy anything and buy a lot”. We have not paid attention to such messaging at STORE. Instead, we have stuck to our value approach knitting and to the customers and communities we seek to serve. We purposefully constructed STORE to stand the test of time based on experiences and discoveries we made at two prior successful public companies. We took deliberate steps to create a business model and then to back that model by a long-term qualitative approach designed to make it sustainable. We adopted this approach because it is hard to pivot an established real estate investment company. Net Lease REIT business models, with their longer lease terms, are not readily changed. Nor can portfolio sector, tenant diversity or balance sheet design be easily altered. Altogether, a superior business model is central to creating barriers to entry and setting up the potential for sustained long-term risk adjusted rates of return. This is what we look for as value investors, what value investors look for in us and what long-term Alpha creation is all about.

Disclosure: I am/we are long STOR. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional disclosure: I co-founded and serve as the Chief Executive Officer of STORE Capital

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