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Category ArchiveNorges Bank

Hedge Fund Kepos Capital Inks 20K-SF Lease at 11 Times Square

Alternative investment firm Kepos Capital has agreed to move its Manhattan headquarters to a 20,000-square-foot space at SJP Properties11 Times Square, Commercial Observer has learned.

Kepos signed a 10-year deal last month for part of the 35th floor at the 40-story, 1.1-million-square-foot office tower at 640 Eighth Avenue between West 41st and West 42nd Streets, according to sources with knowledge of the transaction.

The firm is expected to relocate to its new Midtown West space in August from its current location just one block south at the New York Times Building at 620 Eighth Avenue, where it presently occupies around 17,000 square feet on the 44th floor.

Asking rent in the deal was not immediately clear. Paul Glickman and Diana Biasotti of JLL represented landlord SJP—which owns 11 Times Square in partnership with PGIM and Norges Bank—while CBRE’s Ben Friedland and Michael Movshovich represented Kepos

In a statement, SJP CEO Steven Pozycki said Kepos wanted to “maintain its presence in the city’s premier transit hub,” referring to 11 Times Square’s proximity to Port Authority Bus Terminal across Eighth Avenue and Penn Station several blocks south. “For today’s financial services firms, it’s critical to have an office that provides state-of-the-art connectivity and is outfitted with the latest technology infrastructure,” he said.

Matt DesChamps, Kepos’ COO, said in a statement that the new space’s larger footprint and the firm’s “ability to design the space to our requirements” provided it the “opportunity to create a customized work environment to serve our clients and support our growing business in the years ahead.”

“Kepos Capital joins a roster of leading financial and technology firms attracted to one of the city’s most advanced and sophisticated commercial towers,” JLL’s Glickman said in a statement to CO. Law firm Proskauer and tech giant Microsoft anchor the office building, which was completed in 2010.

Representatives for CBRE did not immediately provide comment.

Kepos was founded in 2010 by former Goldman Sachs partners Mark Carhart, Giorgio De Santis and Bob Litterman, who previously led the quantitative investment strategies division at Goldman Sachs Asset Management. The firm manages $3 billion in assets for a global base of institutional investors.

Madrid-based amusement park operator Parques Reunidos signed a lease last year to anchor 11 Times Square’s retail space, where it is developing a 45,000-square-foot indoor entertainment complex, known as Lionsgate Entertainment City, in partnership with film studio Lionsgate.

Source: commercial

Ann Taylor Parent Company Renews Offices at 7 Times Square

Ann Inc., the apparel company that owns and operates fashion retailers Ann Taylor and Loft, has renewed its office lease at 7 Times Square, landlord Boston Properties said on its third quarter earnings call today.

While not providing specifics on the renewal, which Boston Properties President Doug Linde said was just signed “this week,” Ann Inc. currently occupies roughly 300,000 square feet across 12 floors at the 47-story, 1.3-million-square-foot office tower bound by Broadway, Seventh Avenue, West 41st and West 42nd Streets, according to CoStar Group data and previous reports.

The company agreed to a 15-year lease to anchor 7 Times Square, also known as Times Square Tower, in 2004 shortly after the building’s development and completion. Ann Inc.’s lease was due to expire in 2020, and Boston Properties executives said the landlord is providing the tenant with a “free rent” period in 2018 in exchange for its commitment to a “long-term renewal.” Boston Properties co-owns 7 Times Square with an affiliate of Norwegian sovereign wealth fund Norges Bank, which agreed to acquire a 45 percent stake in the property for $684 million in 2013.

The real estate investment trust, which is the largest office owner in the country with a portfolio of nearly 49 million square feet, did not provide asking rent or the exact length of lease in the transaction. Broker representation in the deal was not immediately clear. A Boston Properties spokeswoman did not immediately return a request for comment.

Owen Thomas, Boston Properties’ chief executive officer, said the REIT had an overall successful quarter across its office portfolio, which is focused on the New York, Boston, Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Los Angeles markets. Thomas said the company leased 2.6 million square feet in total in the third quarter, which he described as “significantly above average” for the period.

The REIT is seeing the most strength in the “technology and life sciences” tenant segments, Thomas noted, adding that the San Francisco and Boston office markets are currently “outperforming” New York and Washington, D.C.

Thomas said Boston Properties continues to expect “tepid but steady economic growth” from a macroeconomic perspective moving forward, and said the company is “not making any investments or operating decisions” based on the projected impact of the Trump Administration’s current tax reform efforts. But he added that the REIT remains optimistic about job creation and a “relatively low interest rate environment” in the near future.

Providing an outlook on the investment sales market for commercial office properties, the CEO noted that transaction volume in the sector was down 27 percent nationally through the first nine months of this year. Thomas cited “fewer high-quality assets” on the market, with more “trophy assets” in core markets currently in the hands of “long-term holders” who are less willing to sell.

Source: commercial

‘Twilight’ and ‘Hunger Games’-Themed Attraction Headed for Times Square

Movie studio Lionsgate Entertainment is partnering with Spanish amusement company Parques Reunidos to develop a $30 million attraction in Times Square that highlights several popular films and TV series, including Hunger Games and Twilight.

The 45,000-square-foot Lionsgate Entertainment City will offer 13 exhibits that use virtual reality and other technology to “immerse guests in their favorite Lionsgate film and television stories,” according to a press release from Parques. Exhibits themed around Mad Men, Divergent and Now You See Me are also in the works. The flagship project is the first of several Lionsgate-themed attractions planned throughout the U.S. and Europe. It’s expected to open in 2019.

The Madrid-based leisure park operator signed a 15-year lease for three floors of retail at 11 Times Square, at the corner of West 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue. The New York Post, which broke the news of the deal, pegged the asking rent at $7 million a year.

SJP Properties owns the 1.1-million-square-foot building with PGIM and Norges Bank. E-Trade inked a 31,000-square-foot lease at the 40-story tower earlier this year, Commercial Observer reported, and other major tenants include law firm Proskauer Rose, Microsoft and Bank of America.

RKF’s Robert K. Futterman, Joshua Strauss and Scott Zinovoy represented both sides in the transaction. Spokespeople for RKF did not return a request for comment.

Source: commercial