Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Philips Completes Sale Leaseback of HQ in Poland

Jones Lang Lasalle Web Site - October 30, 2006

Guardian Asset Managers has made its first investment in Warsaw, Poland. In a sale-and-lease-back transaction the company has acquired the Philips HQ building with long term lease for 100% of the premises. Jones Lang LaSalle represented the seller Philips while King Sturge represented the buyer - Guardian Asset Managers.

Philips HQ is an A class office development, located on Aleje Jerozolimskie 195B in Warsaw, right in the middle of well established business district. The Property offers a high quality design and good functionality of office space, located over four floors (including ground floor) and comprising 5,751 sq m of rentable office space. It provides 170 car parking spaces located on covered car parking adjacent to the Property.

The Property is conveniently accessible both by private and public transport, as it is serviced by numerous bus lines and the WKD (local commuter train service). A station for this train service is located within 400 metres of the Property. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, October 27, 2006

DaimlerChrysler Completes € 240 Million Sale Leaseback of Former Group HQ

Paddock Talk - October 27, 2006

DaimlerChrysler (stock-exchange abbreviation DCX) has sold the Group’s former headquarters in Stuttgart-Möhringen to IXIS Capital Partners Ltd.. DaimlerChrysler will lease back the property for a period of 15 years with the option of reducing the volume of leased floor space starting in year 11. The Group will continue to use the Stuttgart-Möhringen campus over the long term, but plans to gradually move out of other rented office space in the Stuttgart region. The persons working in those properties will then be moved to Stuttgart-Möhringen following the relocation of the Board of Management and some administrative departments from there to the new Group headquarters in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim.

The real estate in Stuttgart-Möhringen comprises land of 120,000 square meters with 13 buildings and approximately 107,000 square meters of rentable floor space. At present, around 2,700 people work in these buildings.

The cash inflow will amount to approximately €240 million. The operating profit generated by the sale will be reported distributed over the years of the leaseback, in accordance with US GAAP. It will be an eight-digit figure (in euros) for each year, and will amount to €18 million in the year 2006. The transfer of ownership will take place in the fourth quarter of this year, subject to the approval of the antitrust authorities, and the cash flow will also be booked in this period.

As a result of a review of its real-estate portfolio, DaimlerChrysler assessed the real estate in Stuttgart-Möhringen as being not required for operating purposes. The review is a part of the current activities for improving efficiency and optimizing the portfolio with the goal of increasing the Group’s return on net assets. Sphere: Related Content

EDFUND Signs Build-to-Suit Agreement for New 170,000 SF HQ in CA

CoStar Group - October 27, 2006

EDFUND, the nation's second largest provider of student loan guarantee services, preleased 170,000 square feet at two proposed Class A office buildings in the Mather Commerce Center in Rancho Cordova. Construction should begin early next year.

The project, which is scheduled for delivery in June 2008, will be developed by a joint venture of McCuen Properties and Fulcrum Property Co. EDFUND will relocate from 3300 Zinfandel Drive and 10834 International Drive, also in Rancho Cordova.

The relocation of EDFUND's headquarters within Rancho Cordova enables the company to meet its long-term space and technology requirements, and is estimated to save approximately $3.5 million in occupancy costs over the term of the lease, according to Studley, the commercial tenant advisory firm that represented EDFUND.

Senior Managing Director Eric Danielson of Studley in San Francisco and Executive Vice President Andrew Lechter in Studley's Atlanta office represented EDFUND. McCuen Properties and Fulcrum Property Co. were represented in-house. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Agrees to $47.6 Million Sale Leaseback of HQ in CA

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Web Site - October 26, 2006

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:LGND) announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement to sell its corporate headquarters building/land and two adjacent undeveloped parcels of land in Torrey Pines Science Center to Slough Estates USA Inc. for an aggregate consideration of $47.6 million and to lease the building back from Slough.

'We are pleased that our strategic process has produced another transaction that we believe will enhance shareholder value. The sale of our real estate assets will provide additional working capital as we transition to a refocused Ligand built upon our targeted internal research and development effort and broad partnered product pipelines,' said Henry F. Blissenbach, Ligand Chairman and Interim CEO. The asset purchase agreement and related contracts have been approved by the Ligand board of directors. The transaction is subject to payment of an existing mortgage and other customary closing conditions.

Under the terms of the asset purchase agreement, Ligand will receive cash of approximately $35 million, net of fees, expenses, and existing indebtedness. In addition, Ligand has entered into a long term lease arrangement with Slough to lease back the building. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, October 20, 2006

Wells Fargo Awards $370 Million Sale Leaseback of San Francisco Office Tower

Commercial Property News - October 18, 2006

The 655,400-square-foot office tower at 333 Market Street in San Francisco has found a new owner, courtesy of a $370 million sale-leaseback deal. Principal Real Estate Investors took the property off the hands of owner and sole occupant Wells Fargo.

The bank had owned 333 Market St. (pictured) since 2004 when it bought the high-rise for a reported sum of approximately $150 million from a partnership involving the property's developer, Shorenstein Partners. Wells Fargo will continue to occupy the Class A office space in its entirety under a new 20-year, triple net lease.

Located a stone's throw from vital rail transportation smack in the middle of the city's Financial District, the 27-year-old structure at 333 Market Street is a soaring 33-story high-rise that was designed by architect Gin Wong. The property actually consists of the tower, which includes 16,000 square feet of ground-level retail space, and an adjacent five-story annex office building.

According to Mark Hanrahan, managing director for Principal Real Estate Investors, much of the property has already been upgraded. And over the next year, it will have been 100 percent renovated. "Given the great tenant, great location and quality of the building, 333 Market St. is a good fit for us and a long-term hold," Hanrahan told CPN.

Jeff Weber of San Francisco-headquartered Eastdil Secured, a subsidiary of Wells Fargo & Co., also based in San Francisco, orchestrated the deal. Sphere: Related Content

Bank of Ireland’s Completes 36 Branch Sale Leaseback at 2.6% to 3.7% Cap Rate

Galway Advertiser - October 19, 2006

Bank of Ireland’s Eyre Square, Mainguard Street, and Ballinasloe branches were among 36 branches successfully sold in a deal thought to be one of the country’s largest commercial investment transactions.

The porfolio, which carried a guide price of €237.5m, was placed on the market for sale by tender in one or more lots in September with a tender date of October 4 through agents CB Richard Ellis.

Thirty-six of the bank’s more than 270 branches were involved in the transaction including 13 branches in Dublin plus key provincial centres including Galway, Cork, Limerick, and Waterford.

Officials at the bank and its agents declined to provide a breakdown on individual transactions or to give details on how many investors were involved but confirmed the sale and leaseback of the entire portfolio was successfully agreed on Tuesday.

Bids were made on the entire portfolio, individual properties within it, and on mini-portfolios, according to CBRE, which developed a website http://www.www.cbreboi.com
to cater for the high level of interest in the porfolio.

The bank’s media relations manager Anne Mathews told the Galway Advertiser the sale collectively exceeded the guide price.

“We are not in a position to release details on individual properties but I can confirm that the total sale price exceeded the guide price producing a range of yields on the individual properties from 2.6 per cent to 3.7 per cent with average for Dublin properties at three per cent.”

The entire porfolio produces an annual rent of €8.6m a year and the properties are let under all new 25 year leases with five yearly upward only rent reviews. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, October 19, 2006

ICON Pursuing EUR 80 Million Sale Leaseback of New Dublin HQ

The Irish Times Article - October 18, 2006

Another Irish company is to embark on a sale and leaseback of its proposed new global headquarters even before construction gets under way. ICON plc, the global contract research organisation, is expected to secure up to €80 million for four new office blocks and its existing headquarters at South County Business Park in Leopardstown, Dublin 18. Michael Clarke of Hamilton Osborne King said yesterday that the selling price would reflect a yield of 4.75 per cent.

ICON's decision to free-up capital for its core business comes a week after Eircom announced that it planned to sell and leaseback its new nine-storey headquarters which is under construction opposite Heuston Station in Dublin 8. That move is expected to release around €180 million for investment in the roll-out of a broadband service. The yield in that case is likely to be around 4.25 per cent.

ICON has already secured planning permission to build four four-storey office blocks linked by a glass atrium to the existing headquarters building. The completed development will extend to 15,868sq m (170,803sq ft). There will also be 338 car-parking spaces on the site which extends to 1.83 hectares. The new buildings are due to be completed on a phased basis from March, 2007. Rents will equate to between €247 and €258 per sq m (€22.94/€23.96 per sq ft) and €1,000 for each of the car-parking spaces.

Leases of 20 years will provide for five yearly upwards-only rent reviews though the tenant will have a break option in year 15 once 12 months notice is given. The proposed rent roll can vary from €3,233,000 to almost €4.3 million, depending on which of three options the successful bidders goes for.

Under option one, the existing building of 3,945sq m (42,464sq ft) can be sold with vacant possession, reducing the overall rent to €3,233,000. Under option two, one of the new blocks with 3,439sq m (37,017sq ft) of floor space would be sold without a lease in place while the third alternative would see ICON occupying all four new blocks, as well as the existing building. In this case the rent roll would be €4,299,600.

ICON was founded in Dublin in 1990 and has grown steadily to become the fourth largest full service contract research organisation in the world. The company employs 4,000 people in 45 offices in 30 countries. Hamilton Osborne King is due to sell the investment once proposals are submitted by November 9th. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Neste Oil Completes Eur 118 Million Sale Leaseback of 73 Service Stations in Finland

Neste Oil Web Site - October 16, 2006m

Neste Oil has decided to sell 73 traffic station properties in Finland to focus more clearly on refining and sales of cleaner traffic fuels. The transaction is valued at EUR 118 million, and the company expects to book a capital gain of approximately EUR 65 million on the sale in its fourth-quarter result.

Neste Oil has owned these properties through its subsidiary, Best Chain Ltd., and leased them, with the exception of fuel pump areas, to Ruokakesko Oy. Fuel pumps and related equipment, canopies, and fuel tanks are excluded from the sale.

The sale will not impact the operations of the Neste stations in question. Neste Oil will continue fuel sales under long-term rental contracts, and Ruokakesko will also become tenants of the new owner, an international investment company owned by Delek Real Estate Ltd., listed on the Tel Aviv stock exchange. Delek Real Estate owns additional properties in Finland, Sweden, and Germany, among others.

“Real estates are not part of our core business, and the profit we have made on these assets has not met our targets,” says Matti Peitso, Neste Oil’s Executive Vice President, Oil Retail. “We want to concentrate on fuel sales and use the capital freed up by the sale to develop Oil Retail and other Neste Oil's business over the long term.”

Neste Oil had about 890 outlets in Finland as of the end of September, and the sale covers 73 locations owned by the company. The sale will not affect Neste Oil’s unmanned outlets, D-stations serving the needs of commercial drivers, and the sites owned by independent Neste dealers.

Neste Oil expects the sale to be completed before the end of October. Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Wendy's Weighing Sale Leaseback of Company Owned Restaurants

New York Sun / Dow Jones Newswires - October 13, 2006

Wendy's International Inc. said Thursday it would conduct a tender offer for as much as $800 million of its shares later this year using a modified Dutch auction. The move disclosed the company's long-anticipated determination of how it planned to spend $1 billion plus it received from the recent spinoff of Tim Hortons Inc. Interim Chief Executive Kerrii Anderson told investors at a briefing in New York that over the next 18 to 24 months Wendy's intends to return $1 billion to shareholders.

Elaborating on plans to improve what one executive termed its "fuzzy" flagship brand's image, Wendy's intends to invest about $60 million a year over the next five years to upgrade and renovate company-operated restaurants. It also plans to allocate $100 million over that period to buy restaurants from franchisees, renovate them and then sell them to what it called "proven operators."

To encourage franchisees to remodel their restaurants, the company said it would pay those who do so $25,000. That program could cost Wendy's $25 million a year near-term, Mrs. Anderson said.

Mrs. Anderson said Wendy's is studying the possibility of expanding its limited presence internationally, another area where rivals such as McDonald's Corp. and Yum Brands Inc. hold significant leads.

Over the next three years Wendy's plans to franchise between 400 and 500 company-owned restaurants, with a goal of reducing the company units to about 1,000.

She said the Dublin, Ohio, fast-food operator also is exploring the saleleaseback of company-owned real estate. About 600 sites are on its books. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Eircom Seeking €180 Million Sale Leaseback of New HQ in Dublin

The Irish Times - October 11, 2006

Eircom's distinctive new nine-storey headquarters building - currently under construction opposite Heuston Station in Dublin 8 - is to be sold under a sale and leaseback arrangement following similar successful deals earlier this year by AIB and Bank of Ireland.

Jones Lang LaSalle, which is selling the investment on behalf of Osprey Property Ltd, the property development arm of Eircom, is quoting a guide price of €180 million for the investment which will produce an annual rent of €8 million.

At that price, the lease would run for 15 years and the transaction would show a net yield of 4.25 per cent. Those interested will also have the option of bidding higher figures for 20-year and 25-year leases.

Eircom is apparently confident of achieving a sale at a yield of 4.25 per cent, following at least two other investment sales which showed lower returns. Hibernian's recent purchase of the original AIB headquarters building in Ballsbridge for €170 million will show a yield of 3.7 per cent. Irish Life also settled for a similar return when it completed the purchase this week of a new office building at City Quay for around €72 million.

Eircom will be paying an initial rent of €376 per sq m (€35 per sq ft) for the new building which will have a floor area of 19,550sq m (210,436sq ft) and €3,500 for each of the 190 car-parking spaces at basement level.

With revenues of €1.7 billion, Eircom is the country's leading telecommunications supplier with a 74 per cent market share of the fixed line market and, through Meteor, 16 per cent of the mobile market.

Eircom, recently taken over by Babcock & Brown, says that its decision to move ahead with a sale and leaseback deal for its new headquarters is designed to free up capital to re-invest in its "core business". Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

State Street HQ in Boston Headed to Market

Boston Business Journal - October 9, 2006

One Lincoln Street could again be making an appearance on sale block and this time it could sell for more than $800 million.

Several real estate sources indicated on Monday that the majority owner, American Financial Realty Trust (NYSE: AFR), is considering selling the 1.1 million square-foot tower it bought for $705 million in February of 2004. At that time the sellers -- comprised of a joint venture including John Hynes of the Gale Co. -- doubled their money since the 36-story tower in the Financial District was built for $350 million.

Sources indicated Pennsylvania-based American Financial had hired New York-based brokerage firm, Eastdil Realty Inc.

In recent weeks, American Financial approached State Street Corp. about buying the building as part of a right of first refusal agreement it has with the building's largest tenant. The building was renamed the State Street Financial Center after its previous owners consummated a 20-year lease for the entire building with the financial services company.

It's unlikely State Street would buy the building given the extraordinary asking price the real estate investment trust is seeking, said sources. It would be among the largest deals in Boston's history should it sell for more than $800 million. The John Hancock Tower holds the record for highest price paid for a commercial tower at $910 million 2003.

American Financial Realty paid a record per-square-foot price for the tower at $671 million. By the end of 2004, the REIT sold 30 percent of its ownership stake to the Canadian real estate investment trust, IPC US Income Commercial Real Estate Investment Trust, for $60.3 million. At that time the tower was valued at $763.5 million. Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Chevron U.S.A. Signs Largest Lease in North America Since 2000

Canada News Wire Group - October 5, 2006

Brookfield Properties Corporation (NYSE:BPO)(TSX: BPO) today announced that it has acquired Four Allen Center, a 1.2 million square foot property located at 1400 Smith Street in downtown Houston, for $120 million. In addition, Brookfield Properties announced that it has signed a lease with Chevron U.S.A., Inc., a subsidiary of Chevron Corp., for the entire property.

The lease was believed to be the largest single building lease ever in Houston and the largest new office lease in north america since 2000.

Brookfield Properties will hold Four Allen Center in a joint venture with The Blackstone Group, a private equity firm. Through the acquisition of Trizec, completed earlier today, the Brookfield Properties joint venture acquired seven other central business district assets, making it the largest office owner in downtown Houston with holdings of 7.4 million square feet.

In February 2006, Chevron signed a new lease for 465,000 square feet at Continental Center I, 1600 Smith Street, currently owned by the Brookfield Properties joint venture.

An icon of the Houston skyline, Four Allen Center is a 50-story, 1.2 million square foot, Class A office building that was developed in 1983. The office tower is strategically situated on Houston's six-mile pedestrian/retail sky bridge and tunnel system that serves major downtown towers. The property's reflective glass facade and east/west diagonal setting provides a high level of visibility from all points of the central business district. Sphere: Related Content

PSE&G HQ in Newark, NJ Sold for $147.5 Million

Citifeet / GlobeSt - September 25, 2006

Wells REIT has acquired 80 Park Plaza, a one-million-sf Downtown office tower, on behalf of its Wells Real Estate Investment Trust II. The seller was Newark Urban Renewal Investors LP, an affiliate of Lehman Brothers.

The deal was brokered for the seller by Gary Gabriel and Andrew Merin of Cushman & Wakefield’s Metropolitan Area Capital Markets Group, East Rutherford and the reported sale price of $147.5 million factors out to about $144 per sf.

The building, a Downtown landmark, serves as the headquarters of its sole tenant, utility giant Public Service Electric & Gas. It was completed in 1979 as a build-to-suit for PSE&G by the New York-based Rockefeller Group Development and has undergone significant improvements in the past three years. The asset consists of a 26-story main tower and a three-story plaza.

While PSE&G is booked into the entire building under a lease that runs into 2015, there had been some questions very recently about how much of the asset the state’s largest utility would actually continue to occupy. PSE&G had last year agreed to be acquired by the Chicago-based Exelon in a $28-billion deal, but earlier this month Exelon backed out in the face of opposition by the state’s Board of Public Utilities. Sphere: Related Content

Apex Hotels Completes £54 Million Sale Leaseback of Two Edinburgh Hotels

CatererSearch - October 4, 2006

Apex Hotels has completed a £54m sale-and-leaseback of two Edinburgh hotels. Northern Ireland property company WG Mitchell has taken over ownership of Apex International and Apex City, both on Edinburgh’s Grassmarket, as part of the deal.

Apex said it would continue to trade as normal at the sites following a leaseback deal, and that the funds released would be used to further its expansion in the UK.

Apex, which operates in the four-star market, also owns and operates the Apex European in Edinburgh, the Apex City Quay in Dundee; and a fifth hotel on Seething Lane, Apex City of London hotel. Sphere: Related Content

JP Morgan Chase Closes $460 Million Sale Leaseback of US Office Portfolio

CoStar Group - October 4, 2006

Brookfield Asset Management (NYSE: BAM) acquired a 5.3 million-square-foot commercial portfolio from JP Morgan Chase & Co. valued at $460 million. The portfolio is comprised of 33 properties and banking centers spanning 10 cities, mostly in the Midwest, including Chicago, Phoenix, Dallas, Milwaukee and Baton Rouge, LA.

Under the agreement with Brookfield's Real Estate Opportunity Fund, JP Morgan Chase Bank N.A. has signed long-term, lease-back deals for significant portions of the space.

Trophy acquisitions include the distinctive, 1 million-square-foot 300 S. Riverside Plaza in Chicago; Arizona’s tallest structure, the 670,000-square-foot Chase Tower in Phoenix; and Milwaukee’s 472,500-square-foot Chase Tower. Local reports put the S. Riverside Plaza deal upwards of $200 million.

Brookfield declined to disclose the complete list of properties.

The acquisition is the Fund’s largest to date, although Brookfield itself has been one of the most active acquirers of highrise office assets of late, announcing in June that it had teamed with New York-based private equity investor The Blackstone Group to acquire Trizec Properties (NYSE:TRZ) and Trizec Canada (TSX:TZC) for $8.9 billion.

Brookfield is a Toronto-based REIT focused on property, power and infrastructure assets. The company has holdings in North America, Europe and Brazil, including more than $50 billion in U.S. assets under management. Sphere: Related Content

United Western Bancorp Completes $27 Million Sale Leaseback of Denver HQ

United Western Bancorp Web Site - October 4, 2006

United Western Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: UWBK) through its subsidiary, Matrix Tower Holdings, LLC, has completed the sale of United Western Financial Center (formerly known as Matrix Financial Center), its high-rise headquarters building in downtown Denver, for a purchase price of $27,250,000.00.

In connection with the sale, the Company and the Company’s wholly owned subsidiary, United Western Bank (formerly known as Matrix Capital Bank), agreed to lease back an aggregate of approximately 62,487 square feet of office space in the building for a term of 10 years. In addition, the Company will guarantee certain third-party lease obligations on approximately 23,171 square feet of office space for 10 years (such third parties being former subsidiaries of the Company).

It is expected that the sale-leaseback transaction will result in an economic gain to the Company of pproximately $11.1 million pre-tax. It is expected that the Company will recognize the gain at a rate of approximately $1.1 million annually, pre-tax, as a reduction in its lease expense over the 10-year term of the lease in accordance with FASB Statement No. 98. Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Macdonald Hotels Nearing £400 Million Sale Leaseback of 23 Hotels

The Times - October 2, 2006

Macdonald Hotels, the privately owned hotel operator, is on target to reap more than £400 million from the sale of a package of 23 hotels put up for auction in July — at least £100 million above previous estimates.

The company, which was taken private in 2003 in a £620 million deal backed by Bank of Scotland, is understood to have whittled the bidders down to a shortlist of about four parties, including Dawnay Shore Hotels and Moorfield and Prestbury, the property investment firms.

When Macdonald appointed Deloitte to handle the disposal, it indicated that it would consider only sale-and- leaseback proposals that allowed it to retain management control, but at least two of the remaining bidders are understood to have made bids of up to £450 million to buy the hotels outright with vacant possession.

Dawnay Shore is keen to add the properties to its Paramount Hotels chain. Moorfield also has an operator standing by to lease them. Sphere: Related Content

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