startup fund

Thor Lures Personal Finance Company From Third Avenue

597 FIFTH AVENUE. PHOTO: COSTAR GROUP

597 FIFTH AVENUE. PHOTO: COSTAR GROUP

Thor Equities has leased out a full floor of its 597 Fifth Avenue to a personal finance firm, Commercial Observer has learned.

ValuePenguin will occupy the whole fifth floor, or 6,370 square feet, of the 81,000-square-foot building between East 48th and East 49th Streets, according to a press release from Thor.

The company signed a 10-year deal at the property, also known as the Charles Scribner’s Sons Building, and is moving from a smaller space at 600 Third Avenue, according to Thor.

Asking rent was in the deal was $65 per square foot, a source familiar with the deal said.

Douglas Elliman’s Anita Grossberg represented ValuePenguin, while Thor’s Adam Rappaport represented the landlord in-house with Christel Engel and Robert Gallucci of Colliers International. Grossberg did not immediately return a request for comment.

“The quality of the existing building meant that we wouldn’t be required to do significant imagining on our own about what to do with the office,” Jonathan Wu, the chief executive officer of ValuePenguin, said in an email. “Instead we could simply extend what was already there and focus on our business.”

Thor seems to be leasing out full floors of the 1913 building, originally built to house Scribner’s Bookstore. In April 2015, CO reported that Bateleur Capital signed a deal for the whole 6,364-square-foot ninth floor, and GCT Constructors inked a lease for the entire 6,364-square-foot fourth level.     

“597 Fifth Avenue is ideally situated on Fifth Avenue between Bryant Park and Central Park, with Grand Central Terminal, [Pennsylvania] Station and the Port Authority Bus Terminal all in close proximity,” Melissa Gliatta, Thor’s chief operating officer, said in prepared remarks.  

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/10/thor-lures-personal-finance-company-across-fifth-avenue/

 

Merrill Lynch takes 125K sf at 75 Rockefeller Plaza

Landlord RXR Realty poured $150M into renovations since 2014

From left: 717 Fifth Avenue, 75 Rockefeller Plaza and RXR’s Scott Rechler

From left: 717 Fifth Avenue, 75 Rockefeller Plaza and RXR’s Scott Rechler

Merrill Lynch Wealth Management is trading its Fifth Avenue digs for four floors at RXR Realty’s newly-renovated 75 Rockefeller Plaza.

The investment company signed a lease for 125,000 square feet on the second through fifth floors of the 623,000-square-foot building, Commercial Observer reported. Since 1998, Merrill Lynch has roughly the same amount of space 717 Fifth, according to CoStar.

Terms of Merrill’s long-term lease at 75 Rock were not reported, but asking rents in Midtown averaged $81 per foot during the first three months of 2016, according to Colliers International.

Scott Rechler’s RXR took control of the building in 2013 when it signed a 99-year, triple-net lease with the owner, British billionaire Mohamed Al Fayed. It has poured $150 million into renovations since the 2014 departure of anchor tenant Time Warner Cable.

Merrill was represented by CBRE’s Robert Alexander, Ryan Alexander, Ramneek Rikhy and Emily Jones. Cushman & Wakefield’s Bruce Mosler, Tara Stacom and Mikael Nahmias represented RXR.

In addition to Merrill, other tenants include doll brand American Girl, which signed a 40,000-square-foot lease at the building’s retail space. Last year, Bank of America took a 200,000-square-foot lease at 75 Rock. [CO] – E.B. Solomont

https://therealdeal.com/2016/06/21/merrill-lynch-takes-125k-sf-at-75-rockefeller-plaza/

Visa swipes in at 277 Park Avenue

Credit card processor inks 25K sf lease at Stahl’s Plaza District tower

277 Park Avenue

277 Park Avenue

If the Stahl Organization were looking for a slogan for its 2.1 million-square-foot office tower at 277 Park Avenue, it could try, “Everywhere you want to be.”

Financial services firm Visa, best known for its branded debit and credit cards, inked a lease for the full, 25,000 square-foot 50th floor near the top of Stahl’s Plaza District tower, sources told The Real Deal.

The asking rent for the 10-year deal was $125 per square foot.

A team at Cushman & Wakefield including Peter Occhi, Mark Boisi and James Frederick represented the landlord. David Hollander at CBRE negotiated the deal on behalf of Visa.

The brokers declined to comment.

The space, which boasts dramatic double-height ceilings, became available for the first time in half a century two years ago as one half of a 50,000 square-foot penthouse on the 49th and 50th floors. That was when the Continental Grain Company relocated to the General Motors Building at 767 Fifth Avenue.

The 49th Floor remains on the market, according to CoStar.

Back in 2014, Visa dropped the “It’s” from the company’s popular slogan, abbreviating it to simply: “Everywhere you want to be.”

The company is relocating from the William Kaufman Organization’s 777 Third Avenue, where it currently occupies 10,810 square feet on part of the building’s 23rd Floor. That space is now available for sublease, with a term running through 2023.

277 Park is also home to Stahl’s headquarters.

Other tenants in the building include JP Morgan Chase, which has 571,000 square feet in the tower, and Sumitomo Mitsui Bank Corporation, a subsidiary of Japan’s fourth-largest bank.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/06/02/visa-swipes-in-at-277-park-avenue/

Goldman Sachs’ Real Estate Finance Co-Head Jumps Ship to Start B-Piece Fund

JONATHAN STRAIN (PHOTO: LINKED IN).

JONATHAN STRAIN (PHOTO: LINKED IN).

Jonathan Strain, the co-head of U.S. Real Estate Finance at Goldman Sachs has left the company in order to start his own fund, Commercial Observer can first report.

The new fund will focus on purchasing B-pieces of commercial mortgage-backed securities, according to two people familiar with the move.

Mr. Strain co-led the U.S. Real Estate Finance group along with Ted Borter. He joined Goldman Sachs in 2014 after heading up JP Morgan Chase’s CMBS Capital Markets group for seven years. Prior to that, Mr. Strain held positions at Dillon Read Capital Management, UBS and Morgan Stanley.

Mr. Strain’s last day at Goldman was Friday of last week, according to one of the sources.

A spokesman for Goldman Sachs declined to comment. Mr. Strain could not immediately be reached for comment.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/05/goldman-sachs-real-estate-finance-co-head-jumps-ship-to-start-b-piece-fund/