In Loving Memory of
July 1, 1957 – January 11, 2018
Mitch Bayat will be remembered as the co-founder, inspiration, and spirit of NetCo Investments, Inc. His patience, sense of compassion, empathy, and fun were truly remarkable. No one spread more love in a life time.
In order to appreciate the man, it's important to recognize what he did and the impact on those he touched. Fatherhood was his biggest accomplishment which he cherished immensely to the day of his passing. He also lived a life full of business triumphs that will have a lasting impact for years to come.
Mitch was a true entrepreneur at heart having started a chain of video stores in Los Angeles, CA (remember the Beta and VHS era!), a laundromat in Anaheim, CA, and a Round Table Pizza restaurant in Van Nuys, CA. In the early 1980's he invested in apartments in Houston and Los Angeles. Later he also took advantage of the Savings & Loan crisis by buying foreclosed residential properties in Los Angeles, fixing them up and then selling. Mitch joined Ray in 1997 at Grubb Ellis representing tenants such as Pacific Bell, 7-Eleven, 99¢ Only Stores, Sylvan Learning Centers, El Torrito, Off Campus Bookstores, and Dollar Tree. Finally, Mitch along with Ray, founded NetCo Investments in 2002 to become the expert in redeveloping shopping centers and to this day this laser like focus of the company remains. Mitch was instrumental in redeveloping and re-tenanting shopping centers in California, Oregon, New Mexico, Texas, and Illinois. His all-time favorite tenant was Ross Dress for Less – and he negotiated a lease from first draft to execution in 6 weeks!!! That is one accomplishment we will NEVER forget nor can we envision any one replicating! Mitch was also very fond of his accomplishment in leasing Chesterfield Square in South Central Los Angeles bringing much needed retailers and services to an extremely underserved community.
A Gentle Soul
Mitch was so loving, such a gentle soul. He truly cared for others and made many life-long friends in whatever industry he was in. He had a knack to make others feel good about themselves and he was a great listener. There are no better words to describe Mitch than those of friends and peers.
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We will carry the memories of him forever, for he was, to the many who loved him, larger than life with a great spirit and genuine love of others. First and foremost he was truly an astonishing father to two beautiful children, Alma and Aidan. Then he was a loving son and brother. Fiercely loyal, steadfastly honest, authentic, sincere, amazingly trustworthy, and absolutely an upright pure soul – Mitch was truly amazing! We will boldly move forward to ensure his legacy here at NetCo Investments, Inc. and fondly remember him.
I regularly think of Mitch fondly and will continue to do so. Mitch was a gentleman and, as you say, a gentle man. Most would do well to emulate his warm, humorous, and honest demeanor. I can say that I never heard him speak ill of anyone, even under the most trying circumstances. He was an example to us all. (JF)
What a kind soul he was. He was always willing to help someone in need or give you anything he had. (CJ)
Mitch was clearly one of the truly good men that I have had the pleasure of knowing in my life. His kindness, honesty and integrity stood as examples to me of how I have wanted to live my life. (TS)
Mitch was a kind, thoughtful, deeply good man, and a gentleman. As trying as this business so often is, I genuinely enjoyed working with him and getting to know him over the years, and I really will miss him. (JT)
Mitch made a big difference in my life and I will always be grateful for him and will always remember him in my heart. (JL)
I loved Mitch dearly, I am seeing him, and all of us, laughing in our hotel room right now….."gentle soul"...so true...so true. (MC)
Was a true friend. I never saw him without a big smile on his face. He will be missed by all. (GP)
We have all lost a wonderful and beautiful human being. (AN).
I'll remember Mitch as such a good hearted man...........always a smile on his face!!!! (AC)
He was the best, always kind, and making everyone feel comfortable. He was so easy to talk to I will miss him and how he was very approachable to all with that wonderful smile. (RR)
Although I only knew Mitch for a relatively short period of time, he had a big impact on me. He had a gift of being direct and no-BS but also extremely likable at the same time. I recall our negotiations with XXXX. He was able to instantly disarm their notoriously tough deal person at our meeting at the XXXX ICSC. He was able to get some concessions in that lease that I haven’t seen her give to the biggest institutions in our market. (BR)
Mitch was ABSOLUTELY a gentle soul as you describe. The world has lost a good one. (GR)
He was a wonderful, warm, authentic man and he will be missed. (LL)
He was always so pleasant to talk to and a true professional and gentleman. (CD)
What a wonderful gentle man. He was one of my all-time favorite people. (BH)
Mitch made a mark in my heart from our first meeting, like souls with like thoughts in life. (MB)
He was a great guy and I loved him like a brother. When we were all working together on “Chesterfield”, I once introduced him as my twin but we were separated at birth. He grew up on a desert Island and I had to grow up in the City. I was his Danny Devito and he was my Arnold Schwarzenegger. (IB)
I was so lucky to have been able to call him my friend and he will always hold a very special place in my heart. (MS)
A sweeter man I have never met. Enjoying thinking about his smile and laugh. (LC)
I really enjoyed his company and his apparent zest for life. (BH)
It was a pleasure working with him on real estate transactions. Mitch was one of those “likeable” people who always greeted me with a smile. I will remember that smile and incorporate it in my daily life. (PO)
He was a good man I always enjoyed seeing him through the years (BD)
Ray Bayat - Principal
Ray founded NetCo Investments, Inc. along with Mitch Bayat in 2002 to pursue value added shopping center developments and investments. Since then, Ray has been involved in the acquisition, redevelopment, sale, and financing of more than 1.2 million square feet and transactions valued at over $265 million. Prior to this, Ray was with Grubb & Ellis from 1997 to 2003. He was one of the top retail salespersons for Grubb & Ellis nationally, culminating in a Circle of Excellence performance for years 2000 through 2002. Prior to joining Grubb & Ellis, Ray was Leasing Manager for Newhall Land, the largest land owner in Los Angeles County. The company was involved in both residential and commercial development in Valencia, California. Ray was also an entrepreneur. He owned a franchised restaurant and two other retail businesses from 1988 through 1994.
Currently, Ray is working on securing investment opportunities within the Western States and on a selective basis completing build to suit assignments for tenants. At Grubb & Ellis, Mr. Bayat was active in the Valencia market with over $100 million in commercial land listings, 300,000 sq. ft. of retail leasing, and numerous investment transactions. He was also a member of the leasing team for the 300,000 sq. ft. Chesterfield Square in urban Los Angeles. At Newhall Land, Ray was responsible for leasing existing portfolio of office and retail properties in excess of 700,000 square feet. Additionally, he was responsible for market research, financial analysis, and leasing analysis for development of neighborhood and community shopping centers. With an extensive background in commercial land sales, Mr. Bayat was intimately familiar with entitlement issues and was solicited in the Southern California market for evaluation, marketing, and feasibility studies of large land holdings.
Over the last twenty five years, Ray has had experience in transactions with major companies such as Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Lowe's, Ross Dress For Less, dd's Discounts, Home Goods, Sierra Trading Post, Beall's, Tuesday Morning, Spec's, PetCo, Save Mart, Food 4 Less, Albertson's, Target, CVS, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Office Max, Office Depot, 99¢ Only Stores, Big 5, Factory 2 U, Levitz, Dollar Tree, Tractor Supply Company, Starbucks, Baskin Robbins, Togo's Sandwiches, Don Pablo's Restaurants, Buca Di Beppo, Market Broiler, Mimi's Café, In-N-Out, Panda Express, Tommy's, Del Taco, Ci Ci's Pizza, Subway, Sprint, AT&T, America's Tire Company, ARCO, 7-Eleven, Rent A Center, Aaron's Rents, and various other regional tenants. Additionally, he has been involved in transactions with InvenTrust, CW Capital, Lincoln Financial Group, Newhall Land, Archon Group, Fairfield Residential LLC, The Hanover Company, Investment Development Services, Westrust, Katell Properties, Chase Bank, Home Savings of America, Washington Mutual, and Great Western Bank. Ray has also been involved in the disposition of a portfolio of former bank branches, as well as loan workouts on several retail strip centers.
Mr. Bayat graduated May 1996 from the University of Southern California with masters' degrees in Business Administration (Real Estate Finance Concentration) and Real Estate Development. He received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara in March 1991.
Ray Bayat is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers and University of Southern California Real Estate Alumni.
Kari Wong - CPA, Controller
Kari has spent her accounting career in the real estate industry in the DFW area. She has 20 years of experience and joined NetCo Investment's team in January 2016. Mrs. Wong is a CPA and currently works as a controller for NetCo Investments, Inc. handling all financial matters for each property and the company.
Mrs. Wong's career started as an auditor for KPMG primarily focused on real estate clients and from there worked as an assistant controller for Phoenix Property Company. At Phoenix Property Company, where she spent over 9 years of her career, she worked on many acquisitions and dispositions and primarily was involved in the accounting of the operations of multi-family and mixed use projects. Notably one of the more renowned projects she worked on was West Village in the Dallas Uptown area. During her time at Phoenix Property she had the opportunity to work with and learn from many prominent real estate moguls in the DFW area. This opportunity enabled her to build on those relationships and find new opportunities as she began working on a contract basis in 2010 after her third son was born. In 2010 she began working at Henry S. Miller Interests, Inc. and continued with them for the next 6 years. She was as controller for the family's business and as her time with them continued assisted with not only accounting functions but also property management and office management functions as well as she helped the family wind down this company. As she was winding down Henry S. Miller Interests, Inc., Mrs. Wong engaged in new opportunities and began working as a controller for Lakeside DFW on a 155 acre mixed use development in Flower Mound, TX developed by Peter Stewart and family and Realty Capital Management. During this time is also when she joined the NetCo team.
Kari graduated from the University of New Mexico, Anderson School of Business with her BBA with a concentration in accounting in 1997. She is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in New Mexico. She relocated to the Dallas Ft. Worth area from Albuquerque, NM in December of 1997 after she graduated from UNM and has spent her entire career in the Dallas Fort Worth area.
Kari lives in Frisco, TX, has been married for the last 16 years and has three sons. In her spare time she enjoys watching her sons in their many different sporting activities, spending time with friends and family, enjoying new restaurants and traveling.
Kurt Kurtti - Development Partner
Kurt has 25 plus years experience in real estate, developing over 4.8 million square feet of retail shopping centers, community centers, and individual ground up buildings via new developments and existing redevelopments. He has administered over $450 million in project costs in the acquisition, entitlement, development, leasing, design, and construction of power centers, community centers, and individual retail developments. During his tenure of these developments, he has served on teams in Senior Management positions for several prominent real estate development firms and retailers including Red Mountain Retail Group, Kimco Developer's Inc., Cousins Properties, Inc., Homart Development Company, and Dominick's Finer Foods.
Currently Kurt is working on consulting for and securing investment opportunities throughout the western states for individual investors and retailers, and partnering with both to develop retail centers and properties.
Kurt has wide ranging experience in executing retail tenant transactions with national and regional retail companies such as Target, Kohl's, ALDI, Curacao, Numero Uno Markets, El Super Markets, Ross Dress for Less, TJX Companies, Michael's, Petco, Petsmart, Payless Shoes, McDonald's, Chick fil A, Panda Express, Krispy Kreme, Dunkin Donuts, Perfect Teeth. His experience includes negotiating and executing leases while executing on project and lease requirements and criteria for major tenants as well as small shop tenants. Prior to entering commercial real estate development, Kurt's foundation started during five years practicing architecture including site planning, entitlements, design development, and construction management.
Kurt is a real estate executive with the proven ability to manage all phases of development and redevelopment including: acquisition; repositioning; entitlements; municipal, public, and utility agencies processes and approvals; property due diligence; leasing; project financial analysis; managing and directing architects and engineers; overseeing the construction process; and general development project management of numerous commercial retail assets throughout the Midwest and Western United States.
Education and Organizations
Kurt earned a Bachelor's Degree in Architecture from the University of Illinois at Chicago and is a Licensed Architect. Kurt is a licensed California Real Estate Broker. He serves on the Saddleback & Santiago Colleges Regional Real Estate Department Advisory Board. Professional affiliations include memberships in the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and the Association of Corporate Real Estate Executives (ACRE).