(Updates with comment from broker in fourth paragraph.)
Oct. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Brookfield Office Properties Inc. sold Newport Tower in Jersey City to Multi-Employer Property Trust for $377.5 million, the highest price on record for a single office building in New Jersey, Brookfield said.
The 36-story, 1.1 million-square-foot (102,000-square- meter) property on the Hudson riverfront, home to such tenants as BNP Paribas SA and AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co., is 89 percent occupied, New York-based Brookfield said in a statement today. The real estate investment trust acquired the building as part of its purchase of Trizec Properties Inc. in 2006, when 60 percent of it was leased.
Brookfield decided to sell the building after achieving “opportunistic returns for us and for our partners,” Dennis Friedrich, president and global chief investment officer, said in the statement. “During our six-year period of ownership and management, we were able to successfully lease up, stabilize, and incorporate sustainable strategies in the building to significantly increase value.”
Jersey City, where Goldman Sachs Group Inc. built New Jersey’s tallest skyscraper in 2004, is “viewed as an extension of New York,” according to Jeff Dunne, a vice chairman at Los Angeles-based CBRE Group Inc., who represented Brookfield in the deal. A lack of new office space and an attractive price discount compared with Manhattan shows “there’s a good case to be made for rent spikes” at Jersey City’s top-quality properties, he said.
Multi-Employer Property Trust, based in Washington, is a real estate fund that is owned by more than 360 pension plans. The Newport Tower gives the company a “high-quality, stabilized asset in the New York-New Jersey market, which is one of the strongest office markets in the U.S.,” David Antonelli, executive vice president, said in a separate statement.
--Editors: Christine Maurus, Daniel Taub
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