SL Green Sells Stake in SoCal Office Portfolio as Los Angeles Office Market Shifts Away from Downtown

The ownership structure of a major office portfolio recently suffered some changes after New York City-based SL Green Realty Corp. announced that it had sold its stake in a Southern California portfolio to an affiliate of its joint venture partner. SL received $100 million from an entity linked to Blackstone Real Estate Partners VII for its 43.74 percent interest. The properties that comprise the portfolio are located across Southern California in major markets including Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego.

The ownership structure of a major office portfolio recently suffered some changes after New York City-based SL Green Realty Corp. announced that it had sold its stake in a Southern California portfolio to an affiliate of its joint venture partner. SL received $100 million from an entity linked to Blackstone Real Estate Partners VII for its 43.74 percent interest. The properties that comprise the portfolio are located across Southern California in major markets including Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego.

The 28-asset portfolio offers the new owner 3.7 million square feet of office space. Originally, the portfolio included 31 properties and a total area of 4.5 million square feet which SL Green Realty Corp. acquired through foreclosure. The company then began restructuring the portfolio’s $750 million of in place financing. During the time of the restructuring, SL began its partnership with Blackstone, then acquired the minority interest in three of the properties. The seller went on to move those three properties in deals worth a total of $223 million, a recent press statement indicated. The portfolio then went through another extensive improvement and lease-up phase, handled by an affiliate of Blackstone, namely Equity Office Properties.

The greater Los Angeles’ office market has seen vacancy rates plateau at around 16.5 percent over past quarters, as data from Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Services indicates. The research shows that in 2013, around 510,000 square feet of office space was added to the available stock. Increased leasing at the end of the year meant that absorption in 2013 maintained the average vacancy rate for downtown Los Angeles at the same levels seen during 2012. Major improvement in terms of vacancy has been seen over the past few years in the San Fernando Valley where current values outpace L.A.’s downtown. The Westside Cities submarket has also seen rates drop, with vacancy now lower than the core of Los Angeles.   

Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services at marcusmillichap.com