Lease Beat

CBS Signs for Space at Worldwide Plaza

Worldwide Plaza

CBS TV will consolidate several current locations for the famous network’s East Coast distribution offices during the first quarter of 2015 through a 12-year, 32,598-square-foot lease for the entire 30th floor at 1 Worldwide Plaza in Midtown, Commercial Observer has learned.

The network joins a growing list of media tenants at the 1.8-million-square-foot building in the mixed-use complex owned by a partnership between George Comfort & SonsRCG Longview, DRA Advisors and New York REIT, said Peter S. Duncan, the chief executive officer of George Comfort & Sons and the head of the investment group. Read More

Lawsuits

Legal Wrangling Over Worldwide Plaza Deal Set to Continue

One Worldwide Plaza

RXR Realty’s legal representation plans to pursue its lawsuit against American Realty Capital and George Comfort & Sons over the sale of Worldwide Plaza, Stephen Meister, attorney for RXR, told The Commercial Observer.

The lawsuit, filed last month, alleges RXR had reached an agreement to buy the 48.9 percent stake in the 59-story, 1.8-million-square-foot tower with American Realty Capital as an investment partner, which included the right to purchase the entire property for a combined $1.35 billion. Read More

Sales Beat

American Realty Capital NYRR Takes Equity Interest in One Worldwide Plaza

One Worldwide Plaza

Continuing its prolific buying spree in New York, American Realty Capital New York Recovery has acquired a 48.9 percent equity interest in One Worldwide Plaza for $220.05 million, the real estate investment trust announced today.

“We are pleased to have acquired another high-quality asset and look forward to an important partnership with George Comfort & Sons, Inc., RCG Longview, and DRA Advisors LLC,” Michael Happel, chief investment officer for NYRR, said in a prepared statement. “Worldwide Plaza is located in the Midtown Manhattan office sub-market and features large credit tenants as well as potential additional leasing opportunities.   This acquisition increased our portfolio value to over $2.1 billion, including other recently announced acquisitions.” Read More

Worldwide Plaza Confirms Recapitalization Plans

worldwide-plaza

Worldwide Plaza will definitely look to recapitalize, following several months of lingering on the auction block. Sellers, George Comfort & Sons and RCG Longview, had purchased the building – located at 825 Eighth Avenue – in 2009 for just under $600 million.

“The truth of the matter is that they have decided on a recapitalization Read More

Sales Beat

Worldwide Plaza Bids Coming in Slightly Below George Comfort’s Lofty Targets

Worldwide Plaza

Bids for Worldwide Plaza are coming in below the sky-high projections sellers George Comfort & Sons and RCG Longview had hoped for when the partners (finally) put the nearly two million-square-foot office tower on the market in recent weeks.

Several sources familiar with the bidding process say that potential buyers who have stepped forward have so far offered around $1.5 billion for the property, which George Comfort and its partner purchased at the depths of the recession for around $600 million in 2009. Read More

Sales Beat

George Comfort & Sons Eyes 75 Rockefeller

75 Rockefeller Plaza

George Comfort & Sons is in talks to buy 75 Rockefeller Plaza, several sources with direct knowledge of the deal told The Commercial Observer.

The price nor the structure of the transaction was immediately available. The billionaire Mohamed Al Fayed, a former owner of the Britain-based department store company House of Frasier, owns the 600,000-square-foot tower and when he put the property on the market at the beginning of the year had wanted to arrange the sale as a leasehold interest. Read More

Sales Beat

Worldwide Plaza Finally Hits Market

Worldwide Plaza

Every August, the Manhattan real estate industry grinds to a near standstill. Yet, even during these summer doldrums, which have seemed quieter in the face of economic and political uncertainty cast by November’s presidential election, big time dealmaking is quietly percolating.

Eastdil Secured finally put Worldwide Plaza up for bid last week after months of speculation the 1.8 million-square-foot office tower would be offered for sale. Read More

Lease Beat

Havas Worldwide Health Expands at 200 Madison Avenue

200 madison

Health and wellness communications company Havas Worldwide Health is taking after its parent company Havas Worldwide and will be expanding to 170,000 square feet at 200 Madison Avenue, it was announced this morning.

The office expansion will help the company consolidate its offices under one roof at 200 Madison, where Havas has held space –sized at just over 100,000 square feet– for over the past 15 years, the company said in a press release.

After a two-year search for new space yielded few results, Havas Worldwide Health decided to stay and expand inside the 26-story building, which is owned by George Comfort & Sons and Loeb Partners Realty.

David Falk and Jason Greenstein, both of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, represented Havas Worldwide Health in the transaction. Matt Coudert of George Comfort & Sons represented ownership in-house.  Read More

Marketwatch

The Heart of Manhattan: Why Midtown is Starting to Make Sense, Again

Midtown Manhattan

Midtown is starting to matter again.

At least that’s the view to take from commercial real estate deals like Japanese financial firm Nomura Holding’s $60-per-square-foot, 20-year lease for a plush 47-story headquarters at 825 Eighth Avenue.

The arrival of a Japanese multinational at the Worldwide Plaza property embodies the roller-coaster ride of the Midtown office market over the past five years. It was bought by Harry Macklowe for $1.7 billion in 2007, only to be sold at a 60 percent discount two years later in a fire sale that saw George Comfort & Sons snatch it up for $600 million in 2009 when the building was half vacant. Read More

Lease Woes

Nomura To Hand Back 160,000 Square Feet, and Maybe More, at Worldwide

Worldwide Plaza

Nomura is casting off space at Worldwide Plaza by not exercising rights it had to portions of the 900,000 square feet it lease at the 1.8 million-square-foot skyscraper last year.

The decision whittles away at least 160,000 square feet from the Japanese financial institution’s large deal at the property, though some sources familiar with the company said it could give back as much as 200,000-250,000 square feet. Read More

Lease Beat

Lee & Associates Find New Home at 600 Madison Avenue

600 Madison Avenue.

Lee & Associates is moving into a new 22,000 square foot office at 600 Madison Avenue to accommodate the real estate services firm’s surging growth in recent months.

The company is taking the entire third floor of 600 Madison Avenue in a four-year sublease from Tiffany & Co., the jewelry company that vacated the property last year to relocate to the high end Midtown South building 200 Fifth Avenue. Read More

The Lobby

Lee & Associates Nabs Four New Hires

James Wacht.

The burgeoning brokerage Lee & Associates is adding more brokers, including another executive from the bankrupt real estate services company Grubb & Ellis, executives at the firm revealed.

Robert Kunikoff, a retail leasing executive at Grubb & Ellis, will be moving over to Lee & Associates starting this week the executives said. Read More