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JTH Sale Closes

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JTH Sale Closes
John Hancock Tower
As if you didn't know … Boston Properties closed Wednesday on the $930M purchase of the John Hancock Tower and garage, making the REIT the landlord for nearly half Back Bay?s CRE. The seller, a JV of Normandy Real Estate Partners and Five Mile Capital, started buying debt on New England?s tallest tower in ?08 and then purchased it in '09 for $650M. For the Boston Properties sale, Cushman & Wakefield's Capital Markets Group led by Rob Griffin and Ed Maher —with downtown specialists William Anderson, Gilbert Dailey and Dave Martel—repped the seller and found the buyer. The sale was the largest pure investment deal to close in the US last year. (The only larger deal—Google?s $1.8B acquisition of 111 8th Ave in NYC—is a user purchase.
Rob Griffin and Ed Maher
With this trade, Ed (right) says, Boston has come out of New York?s shadow, at long last (not talking football). RCA's Dan Fasulo agrees that more investors will now view Boston as a?runner up? to Manhattan, rather than a market that trails behind in second or third place. Most likely, tenants can count on Boston Properties to be their landlord for many years to come since the REIT strategizes for the long haul. That leads us to anobservation: Boston Properties' CEO Mort Zuckerman has said that the REIT had long sought to own the JHT. What made thesale viable was taking the tower from 20% vacant to nearly full with the Bain lease. Bain left a Boston Properties building (111 Huntington Ave) to go into what has become yet another BP property. Are the moves related?