The three office deals that made the biggest profits since 2012

What does Seattle's Russell Investments Center, One Kendall Square in Cambridge and 550 Madison Avenue have in common?
October 08, 2017 10:22AM

(Philip Taylor, front/Patrick Theiner, back)

What does Seattle’s Russell Investments Center, One Kendall Square in Cambridge and the Big Apple’s 550 Madison Avenue have in common? In the last five years, each of these office buildings made their sellers over $300 million in resale gains. Here’s how it happened.

Russell Investments Center, Seattle – $325M resale gain

(Colman Dock/Wikimedia Commons)


The 886,000-square-foot office building got a surface-level renovation before being sold in 2012 for $480 million to Commonwealth Partners. Tenants of the building’s 3,500-square-foot retail space include Chase Bank, JPMorgan Chase, Zillow Group and Nordstrom. The building’s seller, Northwestern Mutual Real Estate Investors acquired the 42-story tower for $115 million from JP Morgan Asset Management in 2009. The building was three years old when the acquisition took place.

1 Kendall Square, Cambridge – $306M resale gain

(Nick Allen/Wikimedia Commons)


Lincoln Property Co. originally paid $192 million for the building in 2001 and, after flipping through different owners, DivcoWest bought the almost 670,000-square-foot office building for $395 million in 2014 from Rockwood Capital. In comparison to the nearly $200 million increase in value over thirteen years, DivcoWest’s ownership, which included a superficial renovation, saw the building’s value by more than $300 million in just two years; DivcoWest sold the office for $725 million to Alexandria Real Estate Equities in fall 2016.

550 Madison Ave., Manhattan – $300M resale gain

(Citizen59/Wikimedia Commons)


The office tower, owned by Sony Corporation of America for 12 years, was bought for $236 million in 2001 and sold to The Chetrit Group in 2013 for $1.1 billion — with Sony pocketing a $804 resale gain. The new owner held onto the building for three years before scrapping plans for luxury condos and selling the office for $1.4 billion to Olayan Group.

[Commercial Café] – E.K. Hudson