Podcast: How Prologis became world’s largest industrial property owner

Partner, NAI Commercial
  • Dec. 21, 2021

Podcast: Former Prologis CEO Walt Rakowich on industrial CRE

Walt Rakowich, the former CEO of Prologis, joins host Chad Griffiths to discuss a range of topics from the personal, to the re-emergence of Prologis as an industrial CRE powerhouse, to the industry itself.

Rakowich has a bachelor degree in accounting from Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He spent the majority of his career at Prologis, including time as CEO from 2008 – 2012.

He is also the author of Transfluence.

Prologis is the largest industrial property owner in the world and an S&P 500 company, but it was on the cusp of bankruptcy when Rakowich was hired as CEO. He led the company through a dramatic turnaround, and today it owns nearly one billion square feet of warehouses and distribution centres around the world.

Here are the time stamps for the topics they discuss:

0:00 – Introduction;

1:58 – Background on Prologis;

7:09 – Why Prologis focused on industrial real estate;

11:20 – Choosing global markets;

17:01 – Turning the company around (which properties were sold in 2008);

24:20 – Staying on top of the industrial real estate market;

32:48 – Cap rates (industrial vs. office);

34:36 – Cultural changes as CEO of Prologis;

40:56 – A story from Transfluence;

47:23 – Real world example of culture change;

53:29 – How Rakowich started in industrial real estate;

1:00:49 – Getting in touch with Rakowich.



Chad Griffiths is a partner with NAI Commercial Real Estate and focuses on the industrial real estate market. With over 16 years of experience, Chad has both SIOR and CCIM…

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Chad Griffiths is a partner with NAI Commercial Real Estate and focuses on the industrial real estate market. With over 16 years of experience, Chad has both SIOR and CCIM…

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