The Real Deal New York

ASB, Comfort & Sons buy Flatiron District building for $44M

Nine-story commercial property is third JV acquisition between two firms

December 28, 2015 02:00PM
By Rey Mashayekhi

Robert Bellinger

From left: Robert Bellinger and 7 West 18th Street in the Flatiron District

UPDATED, 3:50 p.m., Dec. 30: George Comfort & Sons teamed up again with Maryland-based investment firm ASB Capital Management to acquire a nine-story, 46,000-square-foot Flatiron District commercial building for just under $44 million.

The joint venture bought the building at 7 West 18th Street, located between Fifth and Sixth avenues, from Connecticut-based Scandia Realty for a purchase price of $43.75 million, according to property records filed with the city last week. The deal closed Dec. 14.

The 115-year-old commercial building houses furniture store Homenature at its ground-level retail space as well as “a variety of creative office tenants” on its upper floors, Midtown-based Comfort & Sons said in a statement.

The fully-occupied property is located in the Midtown South office district, which ranks as the tightest office market in the city and is the city’s “most popular submarket for creative companies,” Comfort & Sons president and CEO Peter Duncan said.

“The office rents are currently below market, with three full-floor leases expiring in the next 24 months, providing significant potential for increased income,” Duncan added.

ASB confirmed the transaction in a statement. Scandia Realty could not be reached for comment.

Comfort & Sons and ASB have previously collaborated to acquire a six-story Chinatown commercial building for $62 million in 2013 and a 12-story Chelsea office building for nearly $83 million last year.

Bethesda, Md.-based ASB also partnered with Chicago-based L3 Capital to acquire a portfolio of 16 Williamsburg properties for $86 million earlier this year. ASB and L3 Capital are planning residential and retail projects at the sites.

ASB’s real estate investments division currently has around $6 billion in assets under management, according to the company’s website. The firm’s New York City portfolio features 12 investments valued at approximately $1 billion, it said in a statement.