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Investment Banking Firm Heads to SL Green’s 521 Fifth Avenue

Investment brokerage Laidlaw & Company is moving one block within Midtown.

The 170-year-old investment banking and securities firm inked a 10-year deal for 20,987 square feet on the entire 12th floor at 521 Fifth Avenue, between East 43rd and 44th Streets. Asking rent for the space wasn’t immediately available.

Laidlaw will relocate from 546 Fifth Avenue, which is only a block and a half away between West 45th and 46th Streets, in the second quarter of 2018.

“Fifth Avenue continues to be a premier business address and buildings like 521 Fifth Avenue, which are centrally-located, convenient to mass transit and have the benefit of institutional ownership will continue to outperform the market,” said SL Green Executive Vice President Steven Durels in prepared remarks.

Jonathan Plotkin and Tim Pond of Colliers International handled the deal for Laidlaw & Company. SL Green was represented by Cushman & Wakefield’s Tara StacomBarry ZellerJustin Royce and Pierce Hance. Spokespeople for both brokerages didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Other tenants in the 39-story office building include ChinaTrust Commercial BankMcGraw Communications and Financial Guaranty Insurance Company. The property’s ground floor retail is occupied mostly by Equinox and Urban Outfitters.

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/

 

Investment Manager Staying Put at SL Green’s 600 Lexington Avenue

600 LEXINGTON AVENUE.

600 LEXINGTON AVENUE.

An international investment firm has re-upped its three-floor lease at SL Green Realty Corp.’s 600 Lexington Avenue.

Commercial Observer has learned that MKP Capital Management has renewed for more than five years at the building between East 52nd and East 53rd Streets. The firm currently occupies the 16th through 18th floors, according to a press release provided by the landlord.

An SL Green spokeswoman said the investment manager has been based at the 300,000-square-foot property since 2010. Asking rent in the renewal was $85 per square foot, she added.

SL Green leasing chief Steven Durels noted in prepared remarks that the 36-story tower is “a magnet for financial firms because of its boutique-size floors flooded with natural light, floor-to-ceiling windows and upscale lobby.”

John Mambrino and Evan Margolin of Savills Studley represented the tenant and declined to comment via a spokeswoman. Larry Swiger represented SL Green in-house.

Popular sandwich shop Pret A Manger signed a deal in June 2014 to occupy a portion of the building’s retail section, as CO reported at the time. The eatery took a  corner section at the Midtown property.

Some of the other office tenants at the building include Nissan and aviation firm NetJets, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary. 

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/10/investment-manager-staying-put-at-sl-greens-600-lexington-avenue/

Broker-dealer inks 22K lease at SL Green’s 521 Fifth Avenue

Asking rent was $70 per sf

Asking rent was $70 per sf

Broker-dealer KGS-Alpha Capital Markets is taking more than 20,000 square feet in SL Green Realty’s 521 Fifth Avenue.

The company inked a lease for 22,368 square feet at the 503-foot-tall office tower, formerly known as the Lefcourt Colonial Building. The asking rent was $70 per square foot, the New York Post reported. KGS is moving from its current location at Boston Properties’ 601 Lexington Avenue, where it reportedly subleases about 30,000 square feet.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Tara Stacom, Justin Royce, Matthias Li and Barry Zeller represented SL Green. KGS was represented by Savills Studley’s Jeffrey Peck, Daniel Horowitz and Chris Foerch.

SL Green bought the building in 2006 as part of a joint venture, but took complete control of the property in 2011. In 2012, the real estate investment trust sold a 49.5 percent equity interest at the tower to Plaza Global Real Estate Partners for $72 million. Other tenants in the 409,000-square-foot building include RKF, CFC Capital and Equinox Fitness.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/10/04/broker-dealer-inks-22k-sf-lease-at-sl-greens-521-fifth-avenue/

BlackRock targets Hudson Yards for new HQ

Asset management giant is looking for as much as 1M sf of office space

A rendering of the Spiral and 50 Hudson Yards (Inset: Larry Fink)

A rendering of the Spiral and 50 Hudson Yards (Inset: Larry Fink)

BlackRock has set its sights on Hudson Yards for a new headquarters as big as 1 million square feet.

The company currently rents around 700,000 square feet in two buildings – Fisher Brothers and Soho China’s 55 East 52nd Street and Rudin Management’s 40 East 52nd Street. The lease at 55 East 52nd is due to expire in 2023. In February, The Real Deal reported BlackRock had tapped a JLL team led by Peter Riguardi to find a new, larger office space.

By July, the company had shortlisted three possible new locations: The Durst Organization’s One World Trade Center, the Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group’s Hudson Yards, and Brookfield Property Partners’ Manhattan West. The company is also still holding onto the option of staying at its current location.

But, according to Crain’s, BlackRock is now considering two proposed towers in the Hudson Yards neighborhood. One is 50 Hudson Yards, developed by Related and Oxford, which is located on West 33rd Street and 10th Avenue. The other is Tishman Speyer’s building, the Spiral, which is planned for one block north of 50 Hudson Yards and will span 2.85 million square feet.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/09/28/blackrock-targets-hudson-yards-for-new-hq/

Park Avenue braces for 2M sf of empty office space

Citibank, Major League Baseball plan to move in next few years

It may get a whole lot easier to find office space on Park Avenue pretty soon, as a series of upcoming departures is set to leave landlords with roughly 2 million square feet to fill.

From left: 277 Park Avenue, 270 Park Avenue, 299 Park Avenue and 425 Park Avenue

From left: 277 Park Avenue, 270 Park Avenue, 299 Park Avenue and 425 Park Avenue

The vacancies — courtesy of tenants like Citibank, Major League Baseball and others — could impact 10 percent of the office submarket, which stretches from East 45th to East 59th streets, Crain’s reported.

In addition to Citibank and MLB, other major tenants are weighing their options, including investment firm BlackRock , which could leave its 700,000 square foot digs at 345 Park and 40 East 52nd Avenue and move to Hudson Yards or the World Trade Center when its lease expires in 2023. JPMorgan Chase, meanwhile, is planning to leave its 300,000-square-foot digs at 277 Park in order to consolidate at 270 Park and 383 Madison Avenue.”What you’re seeing is a migration to newer product,” said CBRE’s Mary Ann Tighe. “The age of these buildings is catching up to them.”

According to data from Cushman & Wakefield, Park Avenue offices have an average age of 55.6 years, and many have lower ceilings and structural columns. Meanwhile, many finance companies — which currently occupy roughly 70 percent of Park Avenue’s 22 million square feet of space — are weighing smaller spaces in light of shrinking profits.

Landlords say the vacancies are a number of years away, giving them ample time to find new tenants. And some are looking at the impending vacancies as an opportunity to upgrade their properties or diversify their tenant base.

At 299 Park, Boston Properties is spending $50 million to upgrade the building after Citibank vacates 385,000 square feet next year. “Large tenants have left Park Avenue before, and the space always gets filled,” said John Powers, who heads Boston Properties’ New York office.

Meanwhile, L&L Holding Co. is currently building 425 Park, a 670,000-square-foot tower where hedge fund Citadel has already committed to 200,000 square feet at an average of $175 per foot, including a penthouse space that rents for roughly $300 per square foot.

And Vornado Realty Trust — responding to expectations that the city could rezone part of Midtown East — is attaching clauses to its leases at 350 Park to allow it to clear out the building and replace it with a state-of-the-art spire.

[Crain’s]E.B. Solomont, The Real Deal, August 22, 2016 11:00AM

Two Firms Relocating Within Midtown to William Kaufman Organization’s 437 Madison Avenue

An energy firm and a litigation finance company have each signed deals at 437 Madison Avenue between East 49th and East 50th Streets, combining for more than 12,000 square feet, Commercial Observer has learned.

 

Terra-Gen, which specializes in renewable energy, signed a 6,871-square-foot lease for part of the 22nd floor, according to a press release from landlord William Kaufman Organization. The company signed a five-year deal at the 850,000-square-foot property. 

It will move to the building at the end of this year, leaving behind 1095 Avenue of the Americas between West 41st and West 42nd Streets, also known as 3 Bryant Park. Terra-Gen subleases roughly 17,000 square feet at that location, according to CoStar Group.  

John Fitzsimons of Cushman & Wakefield represented the tenant and did not immediately return a request for comment via a spokesman.

Asking rent at the 40-story building ranges from $80 to $110 per square foot, according to the release.

Bentham Capital, a financial firm that funds plaintiffs and law firms in major cases, signed a deal to relocate to the Midtown property. The company has inked a 10-year lease for 5,261 square feet of built-to-suit space on part of the 19th floor, the release indicates.

The firm will move from 885 Third Avenue between East 53rd and East 54th Streets, where CoStar indicates it currently leases 3,864 square feet

Lance Korman and Brian Waterman of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented the tenant and did not immediately return a request for comment via a spokeswoman.

Michael Lenchner of Sage Realty Corporation, the leasing and management wing of William Kaufman Organization, represented the landlord in-house for both deals along with Frank Doyle, David Kleiner, Cynthia Wasserberger, Hayley Shoener and Harlan Webster of JLL.

The building “continues to be an attractive option for companies seeking a fully modernized office tower with world-class amenities and high-end finishes in a classic Midtown location near Grand Central Terminal,” Lenchner said in prepared remarks.

- Commercial Observer, By Terence Cullen Aug. 16, 2016, 4:43 p.m.

BlackRock narrows HQ search down to three locations

One World Trade Center and BlackRock’s Larry Fink

One World Trade Center and BlackRock’s Larry Fink

Asset manager BlackRock narrowed its list of potential new headquarters locations down to three: The Durst Organization’s One World Trade Center, the Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group’s Hudson Yards and Brookfield Property Partners’ Manhattan West.

The company currently occupies around 700,000 square feet in two buildings – 55 East 52nd Street and Rudin Management Company’s 40 East 52nd Street – where its lease expires in 2023. The Real Deal reported in February that it tapped a JLL team headed by Peter Riguardi to find a new, larger office space.  According to the Wall Street Journal, BlackRock is looking to lease 850,000 square feet at a possible annual rent of around $60 million.

One World Trade Center was 69 percent leased as of early June, and landing Blackrock would bring the 3 million-square-foot tower close to full occupancy. Hudson Yards, meanwhile, has already landed major finance tenants Wells Fargo and fund manager KKR.

BlackRock's employee count has grown from 5,341 at the end of 2008 to currently 13,000. As banks and other Wall Street firms suffered from the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis and stricter financial regulation, asset managers like BlackRock and the Blackstone Group have captured market share.

[WSJ] – Konrad Putzier,

The Real Deal, Asset manager considering 1 WTC, Hudson Yards and Manhattan West
July 27, 2016 05:40PM

 

 

Winton Capital leaves Seagram Building for 315 PAS

Hedge fund to take 35K sf at Columbia Property Trust tower

315 Park Ave South in NoMad (inset from top: Winton Capital’s David Harding and Columbia Property Trust’s Nelson Mills)

315 Park Ave South in NoMad (inset from top: Winton Capital’s David Harding and Columbia Property Trust’s Nelson Mills)

U.K.-based hedge fund Winton Capital is relocating from the Seagram Building to 315 Park Avenue South in Midtown South.

The investment firm signed a 10-year lease for 34,844 square feet at Columbia Property Trust’s under-renovation office tower, according to the Wall Street Journal. Columbia CEO Nelson Mills said the move was a “badge of honor” for 315 Park.

Winton will have a private elevator, lobby and elevators in the 328,193-square-foot building. The asking rent for the space was $105 per square foot.

Columbia, a real estate investment trust, paid $375 million to buy the 20-story pre-war building from Spear Street Capital in 2014. L&L Holding Company manages the property and handles leasing services.

Spear Street bought the building in 2013 from Craig Nassi’s BCN Development for $250 million.
Columbia has also reeled in new tenants including Equinox, which is taking 44,000 square feet, and Fullscreen, a YouTube channel aggregator that’s taking 17,000 square feet.  Oracle Corp. plans to expand its footprint there, as well.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/07/11/winton-capital-leaves-seagram-building-for-315-park-avenue-south/

Financial Manager Renews at SL Green’s 485 Lexington Avenue

485 LEXINGTON AVENUE.

485 LEXINGTON AVENUE.

Offit Capital Advisors, an employee-owned finance firm, has inked a 10-year renewal at 485 Lexington Avenue, Commercial Observer has learned.

The firm will remain in its 14,206 square feet on the whole 24th floor of the SL Green Realty Corp.-owned building between East 46th and East 47th Streets, according to a press release from the landlord. Offit Capital has been based at the 921,370-square-foot property since September 2010, CoStar Group indicates.

Asking rent in the deal was $78 per square foot, according to an SL Green spokeswoman.

“We are delighted that Offit Capital has elected to extend its occupancy with us,”Steven Durels, the head of leasing for SL Green, said in prepared remarks. “Leasing momentum in Midtown East and particularly in the Grand Central [Terminal] submarket has remained very strong this year.”

Larry Zuckerman of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented Offit Capital, while Natasha Brown represented SL Green in-house. An NGKF spokeswoman did not immediately return a request for comment.

Earlier this month, Tailwind Capital signed an early renewal for its full-floor space one level below on the 23rd floor, as CO previously reported. The investment firm is staying in its 14,206-square-foot office for an additional five years. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center signed a 54,200-square-foot sublease for seven years on the second floor of the building in February 2014.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/06/financial-manager-renews-at-sl-greens-485-lexington-avenue/

Steve Cohen’s personal fund leases 175K sf at 55 Hudson Yards

Billionaire to relocate from 330 and 510 Madison Avenue

55 Hudson Yards (Credit: Kohn Pedersen Fox) (inset: Steve Cohen)

55 Hudson Yards (Credit: Kohn Pedersen Fox) (inset: Steve Cohen)

Steven Cohen is so rich that he needs a 175,000-square-foot office to manage his personal wealth.  Naturally, when you’re that rich, you can easily afford the asking rents at Hudson Yards.

Point72 Asset Management, the company charged with managing the hedge funder’s $11 billion fortune, signed a 175,000-square-foot lease at the Related Companies and Mitsui Fudosan America’s 55 Hudson Yards. The 1,000-employee company will move there from its current spaces at 510 and 330 Madison Avenue in 2018. That’s also the year the 1.3 million-square-foot, KPF-designed office tower is expected to open.

Last year, Japanese investment firm Mitsui Fudosan bought a stake in 55 Hudson Yards for $258.8 million In April, law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy signed a letter if intent to lease 250,000 square feet at the tower.  The largest private real estate development in the U.S., Hudson Yards will feature 17 million square feet of commercial and residential space.

Steven Cohen became a billionaire through the hedge fund he founded, SAC Capital. After traders at the firm were convicted of insider trading in 2013, SAC Capital agreed to pay a $1.8 billion fine and was barred from managing third-party funds.

Earlier this year, Cohen reached a personal settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission that barred him from managing third-party money until 2018.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/06/27/steven-cohens-personal-fund-leases-175k-sf-at-55-hudson-yards/

Tailwind Capital Renews 14K-SF Lease at SL Green’s 485 Lexington Avenue

485 LEXINGTON AVENUE (PHOTO: COSTAR GROUP).

485 LEXINGTON AVENUE (PHOTO: COSTAR GROUP).

Private equity company Tailwind Capital has signed an early renewal for its 14,206-square-foot offices at SL Green Realty Corp.’s 485 Lexington Avenue.

The investment firm will remain on the entire 23rd floor of the 32-story Midtown office tower between East 46th and East 47th Streets, which is also known as the Grand Central Square, according to the tenant’s broker CBRE. The firm declined to provide the asking rent in the five-year deal.

A CBRE team of Evan FiddleBen Friedland and Michael Movshovich represented the tenant. While Tailwind Capital looked around at other buildings for its offices, it “ultimately found that 485 Lexington was the best solution for them,” Mr. Fiddle said, without providing further explanation.

Natasha Brown and David Kaufman of SL Green represented the landlord in-house on the transaction. Kaufman did not return a request for comment.

SL Green bought the 925,364-square-foot steel and glass building at 485 Lexington Avenue and the nearby 750 Third Avenue for a combined $480 million in 2004 from pension fund TIAA-CREF, according to city records.

Current tenants in the tower include insurance agency The Travelers Companies, investment firm GoldenTree Asset Management and printer and photo-copying equipment company Xerox Corporation.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/06/tailwind-capital-renews-14k-sf-lease-at-sl-greens-485-lexington-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/

FinTech Firm, Investment Bank Take Full Floors at 19 West 24th Street

19 WEST 24TH STREET.

19 WEST 24TH STREET.

Two tenants have each inked entire floors at Kaufman Organization’s 19 West 24th Street, which together account for more than 10,000 square feet of space.

Commercial Observer has learned that TransferWise, a financial services platform, has signed a five-year, 5,418-square-foot lease for the entire ninth floor at the property between Broadway and Avenue of the Americas.

The company, which allows users to transfer money abroad “without hidden fees,” will take the entire ninth floor of the 63,015-square-foot office building between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the Americas. It plans to move into the building in the summer from coworking space at WeWork’s digs at 175 Varick Street.  

Asking rents in the building were in the $70s per square foot, according to a Kaufman spokeswoman. Colliers International’s Michael Thomas, who represented the tenant, declined to comment on the deal.

The building “continues to attract a diverse mix of high-quality tenants as the building offers updated loft-style office spaces located in one of the most sought after office destinations,” Kaufman’s Grant Greenspan, who represented the landlord with colleagues Michael Heaner and Elliot Warren, said in a statement.

In the second deal, Pursuit Advisory, an investment bank that provides services to media, technology, digital and private equity firms, has also taken a five-year, 5,418-square-foot lease for the entire eighth floor. Pursuit Advisory is also moving in during the summer from a temporary space in Lower Manhattan.

Pursuit Advisory “wanted a cool, hip area,” Arash Sadighi of TheSquareFoot, who represented the bank, told CO. “They felt that 24th Street off Madison Square Park gave them what they wanted.”

With these two leases, the 12-story building is now 85 percent occupied with only two floors remaining. Other tenants include Blue Ocean Brokerage, men’s custom clothing line Knot Standard, health technology company AiCure and a family-owned distributor of wines and spirits, Wilson Daniels Wholesale.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/06/fintech-firm-investment-bank-take-full-floors-at-19-west-24th-street/

TIAA signs two new tenants at 685 Third Avenue

Commonwealth Secretariat and NewOak Capital will take about 46K sf between them

TIAA’s Kevin Smith and 685 Third Avenue in Midtown (Photo: CoStar)

TIAA’s Kevin Smith and 685 Third Avenue in Midtown (Photo: CoStar)

A financial services firm and the governing body of the Commonwealth of Nations, formerly the British Commonwealth, will soon take up residence at TIAA’s 685 Third Avenue.

Commonwealth Secretariat, an organization representing 53 sovereign states, mostly part of the former British Empire, signed a deal to take 27,000 square feet on the building’s 11th floor at an asking rent in the $60s per square foot

Michael Burgio and Daniel Organ of Cushman & Wakefield represented the tenant, which is leaving its current home at 800 Second Avenue, the New York Post reported.

NewOak Capital will take the buildings 21st floor, a total of 17,800 square feet. Asking rent for that space was higher, $77 per square foot. Newmark Grubb Knight Frank’s Larry Zuckerman and Dan Gronich represented NewOak.

JLL’s Matt Astrachan, Frank Doyle, Clark Finney, Jonathan Fanuzzi and Dan Santagata represented the landlord in both deals.

The building’s largest tenant, Salesforce, recently announced it was planning to consolidate its operations at its new headquarters at 3 Bryant Park, which is now officially known as the Salesforce Tower New York.

TIAA took out a $190 million loan last year to fund renovations at the 646,000-square-foot Midtown East tower.

https://therealdeal.com/2016/06/15/tiaa-cref-signs-two-new-tenants-at-685-third-avenue/

Citigroup closes on $1.8B buy of Tribeca HQ from SL Green

Bank had sold 388-390 Greenwich Street in 2007

From left: Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat, 388Greenwich Street and Marc Holliday

From left: Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat, 388Greenwich Street and Marc Holliday

UPDATED, June 13, 6:35 p.m.: Citigroup closed on the repurchase of its Tribeca headquarters at 388-390 Greenwich Street from SL Green Realty for $1.76 billion, according to public records filed with the city Monday.

The banking giant sold the two buildings to SL Green and Ivanhoe Cambridge for $1.6 billion in 2007. At the time, it secured an option to repurchase the buildings, which it now made use of. The Real Deal reported Citigroup’s plans to buy back the tower in January.

Citigroup’s headquarters consists of the nine-story, 760,000-square-foot building 390 Greenwich Street and the adjacent 39-story, 1.59-million-square-foot tower 388 Greenwich Street. Both are currently leased out to the bank.

Citi had named the buildings as its global headquarters in January and is currently renovating them. “As the establishment of our global headquarters in Lower Manhattan shows, we are committed to the city remaining our home for years to come,” a spokesperson for the bank told TRD.

SL Green had bought out Ivanhoe Cambridge in 2014 for $783 million, meaning it will receive all proceeds from the sale. In April, the company announced that it will use the money “to repay approximately $345 million of its corporate credit facility and retire the $1.45 billion mortgage” from Wells Fargo on the building.

When SL Green first announced the pending deal in January, it put the price at $2 billion. It wasn’t immediately clear why the final sales price is more than $200 million lower. A spokesperson for SL Green could not immediately be reached.

The sale marks New York’s largest commercial real estate deal of 2016 to-date. The runner up is 1285 Sixth Avenue, which RXR Realty, David Werner Real Estate and China Life bought for $1.65 billion in May. Also in May, Saudi-based Olayan Group bought the Sony Building at 550 Madison Avenue from Clipper Equity and the Chetrit Group for $1.4 billion. Both deals were first reported by TRD.

First Commercial Bank, Consulting Company Each Sign Full-Floor Deals at 750 Third Avenue

750 THIRD AVENUE.

750 THIRD AVENUE.

After 15 years on the top floor at 750 Third Avenue, Taiwan-based First Commercial Bank has re-upped, Commercial Observer has learned, and advisory and expert services firm Ankura Consulting Group is moving onto a full floor in the Grand Central Terminal-area building.

Commercial Bank’s 11,779-square-foot space spans the entire 34th floor of the 857,354-square-foot office building between East 46th and East 47th Streets, according to information from landlord SL Green Realty Corp. The renewal lease is for 15 years, said Daniel Horowitz of Savills Studley, who represented First Commercial Bank in the deal.

“The building obviously is well-managed by SL Green and [Commercial Bank is] on the top floor of the building so they have the prestige of having a relatively modest-sized presence and maintaining an outsized commanding view of Third Avenue,” Horowitz said. Natasha Brown represented the landlord in-house in the transaction.

Commercial Bank will perform “some modest upgrades, reconfigure the space and make it productive for the ensuing years,” Horowitz added.

Meanwhile, Atlanta-based Ankura signed a new five-plus-year lease covering 11,779 for the entire 28th floor of the building, according to a release from SL Green. The building asking rents range from $69 to $72 per square foot, according to Steven Durels, the director of leasing and real property for SL Green. He noted that the company will move in later this summer after a build-out.

Don Preate of Cushman & Wakefield represented Ankura, while David Kaufman acted in-house for SL Green. A spokesman for C&W didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

“We are delighted to welcome Ankura to the building, and retain First Commercial Bank, Ltd., for the long-term,” Durels said in prepared remarks. He added that “these transactions are testament to the continued robust leasing activity currently be experienced in Midtown Manhattan and particularly within the Grand Central Terminal submarket.”

SL Green acquired the building in July 2004 from TIAA-CREF for $255 million, according to property records. Other tenants in the building include accounting firms Eisner and Marcum, as well as Endurance Reinsurance and FTI Consulting.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/06/first-commercial-bank-consulting-company-each-sign-full-floor-deals-at-750-third-avenue/

Stat of the Week: $20.16 Per Square Foot

As the “unofficial” start to the summer season approaches, what better way to celebrate Memorial Day weekend than by heading outdoors for some fun in the sun? Since it’s not quite warm enough to head to the beach, let’s stroll through some of Manhattan’s most famous parks and enjoy the cool breeze and greenery. Everyone knows office buildings with views of the 843-acre Central Park command a premium compared to the rest of the office leasing market. Analyzing the office buildings around three other parks within Midtown and Midtown South uncover similar results, as the average asking rent of $92.16 per square foot for buildings surrounding Union Square, Madison Square and Bryant Park are $20.16 per square foot higher than the Manhattan average.

The first park on the list is Union Square Park, which is bordered by 10 office buildings totaling more than 978,000 square feet. Currently there is more than 79,000 square feet of vacant office space in this park set, for a vacancy rate of 8.1 percent. Despite a vacancy rate higher than Midtown South’s 6.1 percent vacancy, at $74.94 per square foot, asking rents in these buildings are $5.01 higher than the Midtown South average.

The second park examined is Madison Square Park, which is surrounded by 12 buildings totaling more than 6.9 million square feet. This park set is extremely tight with only 169,115 square feet of vacant space—a 2.4 percent vacancy rate—370 basis points lower than Midtown South. Asking rents in these buildings are averaging $77.86 per square foot, a $7.93 premium over the Midtown South average of $69.93 per square foot.

The last park analyzed, Bryant Park, resides within Midtown, and this park set contains 20 buildings totaling more than 9.6 million square feet. Despite having the highest vacancy of the three park sets, at 9.3 percent it is still 10 basis points lower than Midtown’s 9.4 percent vacancy. In the Bryant Park set, asking rents are $101.91 per square foot and command a $23.12 premium over the $78.79 per square foot Midtown average.

So, as you stroll through Manhattan’s parks this season, keep in mind that even though money doesn’t grow on trees, you need quite a bit to look at them from your office window.

https://commercialobserver.com/2016/05/stat-of-the-week-20-16-per-square-foot/

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/