Owning the most valuable retail store in the country is a “little added gift with purchase,” Hudson’s Bay Company Chief Executive Officer Richard Baker said in a television interview.
Hudson’s Bay bought the Saks department store chain last year for $2.9 billion and with it acquired the retailer’s Fifth Avenue flagship location, recently valued at $3.7 billion, according to CNBC.
The stretch where the store is located — on Fifth Avenue between 49th and 59th streets — now has the highest rents in the city. The northern part of Fifth Avenue surpassed Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay this year as the most expensive strip of real estate in the world.
Baker, talking to CNBC, compared the company to others that have hidden real estate assets that are worth a lot, such as Hilton’s nearly $2 billion sale of the Waldorf Astoria to Chinese insurance giant Anbang Group.
“It’s important to let shareholders understand the value of the assets in our company,” Baker said.
Hudson’s Bay also secured a $1.25 billion loan against the building, with a fixed interest rate below 4.4 percent. Part of the loan — approximately $250 million — will be invested into renovating the property.
“This is the single most valuable retail building in the world,” the CEO told CNBC, “and it deserves to be the finest retail store in the world.” [CNBC] — Claire Moses