Israel-based Bank Hapoalim relocates, downsizes on Sixth Avenue 

Lending giant inks 40K sf deal at Edison’s Hippodrome
By Rich Bockmann | November 05, 2015 05:20PM

Israel’s biggest lender, Bank Hapoalim, is slashing its footprint in Half On Sixth Avenue as it relocates from Silverstein Properties’ 1177 Sixth Avenue to 40,000 square feet, closer to Bryant Park.

The Tel Aviv-based financial institution, which has about $107 billion in assets under management, signed a lease for space at Edison Properties’ Hippodrome building at 1120 Sixth Avenue. That’s just a little more than half of the roughly 74,000 square feet the bank, also known as HBI, is leaving behind at Silverstein’s building one block north at 45th Street, according to CoStar.

Cushman and Wakefield’s Michael Burgio, who represented both sides on the deal, declined to comment.

Dutch banking heavyweight ING is reportedly eyeing a large block of space across the street at the Durst Organization’s 1133 Sixth Avenue. Base asking rents on the Sixth Avenue corridor average $79.20 per square foot, according to Newmark Grubb Knight Frank’s third-quarter office report.

Most of HBI’s international business is done through the New York branch, where the bank focuses on servicing large Israeli companies operating in the United States, as well as trading-room services during the hours that those in Israel are closed for business.

The New York branch grossed $28.8 million in profits through the first half of the year, according to its June financial statements.

The bank said last month that its international focus is on the United States and international private banking, Reuters reported. The bank was also cooperating with the SEC over its investigation into FIFA money laundering.

The financial institution is reportedly one of several banks cooperating with the Justice Department’s investigation into possible money laundering connected with the FIFA corruption scandal.