Citadel Splits With Sterling Bay on Miami HQ Tower

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Citadel has parted ways with Sterling Bay, the developer tapped to build the Citadel’s headquarters in Miami’s Brickell district, representatives for both companies confirmed to Commercial Observer. 

The financial heavyweight, founded and led by billionaire Ken Griffin, will now handle some of the development work internally until it finds a new developer, according to Crain’s Chicago Business, which first reported the breakup. 

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“As Citadel’s internal workplace team has grown, so have the firm’s capabilities to directly support the growth and development of its real estate portfolio,” according to a statement from Citadel. “We are grateful to Sterling Bay for the critical role it has played in our early progress to date.”

Hedge fund Citadel and its sister company, trading firm Citadel Securities, relocated their global headquarters from Chicago to Miami last year. 

The company went on a real estate buying spree, beginning with the purchase of a waterfront parcel at 1201 Brickell Bay Drive for $363 million in Miami’s most expensive land trade ever, where it plans to erect a headquarters tower, possibly over 1,000 feet tall. Griffin has said that construction is expected to take about five or six years, though the company has yet to break ground.

The Chicago-based Sterling Bay helped Citadel with permitting and soil testing at the Brickell site and scoping out the properties, according to Crain’s

Citadel also bought the office building at 1221 Brickell and a three-story apartment building across the street for just over $300 million, as well as a retail building on Palm Beach’s swanky Worth Avenue for $78 million. 

Citadel’s move is set to bring 250 staffers by the end of the year and between 700 and 1,000 employees in the next five years, Griffin told Bloomberg earlier this year. Meanwhile, the financial firm has signed office leases at Southeast Financial Center and 830 Brickell, where it’s taking 90,000 square feet.

Prior to the Citadel deal, Sterling Bay had completed the 545 Wyn office in Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood in 2020. 

“Moving forward, Sterling Bay will turn its full-time attention, resources, and personnel to its growing pipeline of national projects,” said a spokesperson for the developer. 

Julia Echikson can be reached at jechikson@commercialobserver.com