A&E Seals $249M Buy of LeFrak’s Southern Brooklyn Multifamily Portfolio 

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Who says transactions aren’t closing today? Well, A&E Real Estate is here to prove them all wrong. 

The firm just closed on its acquisition of 14 multifamily properties in southern Brooklyn, Commercial Observer can first report. 

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The LeFrak Organization was the seller of the portfolio, which comprises 1,212 apartments, 306 parking spaces and five commercial spaces in the Gravesend and Sheepshead Bay neighborhoods. 

A&E paid $248.7 million for the portfolio and secured a $170 million fixed-rate acquisition loan from Signature Bank. InterVest Capital Partners also provided $25 million of preferred equity in the deal, sources said. 

“As long-term believers in the enduring strength of New York City and its bedrock residential neighborhoods, we have been undeterred by the economic, regulatory and pandemic-related uncertainties that have periodically sent other multifamily investors to the sidelines,” Douglas Eisenberg, executive chairman of A&E Real Estate, said.

CO first broke news of the sale , arranged by Cushman & Wakefield’s Adam Spies, Adam Doneger and Daniel OBrien, back in April. 

LeFrak developed each building between 1957 and 1961, investing more than $18 million in capital improvements over the past five years.  

“The LeFrak family has been one of the most prolific and successful developers of multifamily housing in New York,” Eisenberg said. “We are thrilled by this rare opportunity to acquire such a high-quality portfolio in two bedrock Brooklyn communities and are committed to maintaining the high standards the Lefraks set for all of these residential buildings.  We have long enjoyed a strong relationship with the LeFrak family, and that relationship was instrumental in getting this deal done.”

The largest portfolio assets are 2750 Homecrest Avenue and 2775 East 12th Street, each consisting of 189 apartments. 

The acquisition marks the latest of several big New York City purchases for A&E.  Over the past 12 months alone, it has acquired 3,284 units across 43 buildings in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens. 

Earlier this year, the firm snapped up 1080 Amsterdam Avenue in Morningside Heights from SL Green Realty, as well as Cunningham Heights, a 22-building community in Queens Village; 160 Riverside Boulevard from Equity Residential; and 92-40 Queens Boulevard in Rego Park. 

“Our unwavering conviction has set us up to grow and diversify our portfolio through an array of acquisitions — from luxury buildings on the Upper West Side and Sutton Place to working-class apartment communities in Sheepshead Bay and Rego Park,” Eisenberg said. “In doing so, we have positioned A&E as a leading owner and operator across the entire spectrum of multifamily housing throughout New York City.”

The deal closed during a roller coaster of market volatility, and at a time when financing is hard to come by. Estreich & Co.’s Jonathan Estreich and Jason Boxer negotiated the Signature Bank loan on behalf of A&E. 

 “The completion of this deal serves to underscore our confidence in the future of this city,” John Arrillaga Jr., co-founder of A&E, said. “Jon Estreich and his team did an excellent job securing debt financing in the midst of an incredibly challenging lending environment.”

Cathy Cunningham can be reached at ccunningham@commercialobserver.com