Wolters Kluwer is in advanced talks to land at 28 Liberty

Information-services firm nearing a deal to relocate from Google’s 111 Eighth
By Rich Bockmann | February 26, 2018 05:30PM

Fosun’s Bo Wei and 28 Liberty

New York City landlords, get ready to update your Rolodexes.

Information-services firm Wolters Kluwer is nearing a deal to relocate its offices to Fosun International’s 28 Liberty Street, where the company has a lease out for roughly 130,000 square feet, sources told The Real Deal.

The Netherlands-based multinational firm will be relocating from an address familiar to many in the real estate industry. Not only is 111 Eighth Avenue the headquarters for Google, it’s also the home of Wolters Kluwer subsidiary CT Corporation, which serves as the registered agent for an untold number of real estate LLCs.

A spokesperson for Wolters Kluwer said the company’s lease at 111 Eighth expires next year, and the firm is considering its options, including renewing or relocating within Manhattan. Wolters plans to make an announcement by the end of the first quarter.

Representatives for Fosun were not immediately available to comment. Colliers International’s Mark Friedman is representing Wolters in the negotiations, while a JLL team headed by Peter Riguardi, Mitchell Konsker and John Wheeler are handling leasing at Fosun’s 2.2 million-square-foot tower. The brokers couldn’t be reached.

Sources said Wolters is facing a lease expiration at 111 Eighth Avenue, the 2.9 million-square-foot building that Google’s been trying to clear space in since the Silicon Valley firm bought it in 2010 for $1.8 billion.

But while some tenants have taken buyouts, many are staying put until their leases expire. And Google’s inability to clear out more elbow room in a timely fashion is one of the factors that led it to sign a contract to buy the Chelsea Market building across the street for $2.4 billion, as TRD first reported.

Fosun, meanwhile, is still working to fill thousands of square feet of vacancy at the former One Chase Manhattan Plaza that it bought all-cash in 2013 for $725 million. Since that time, the local arm of the Chinese conglomerate has signed deals like state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s 345,000-square-foot lease and a 53,000-square-foot lease with travel website Booking.com.

Fosun late last year leveraged the property with an $800 million loan led by Deutsche Bank and HSBC.

Fosun is one of a handful of companies that’s reportedly come under intense scrutiny lately from Chinese regulators, who last week announced they had taken control of Anbang Insurance Group.

Fosun managing director Erik Horvat, the former director of World Trade Center redevelopment at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey who joined Fosun in 2014, left the company late last year, Real Estate Alert reported.