The Real Deal New York

RXR and Walton Street Capital near deal to sell 237 Park Ave stake to David Werner

Deal values Grand Central-area building at $1.25B
By Rich Bockmann | January 23, 2019 01:30PM

237 Park Avenue and Scott Rechler (Credit: RXR Realty)

David Werner is in contract to buy roughly 40 percent of 237 Park Avenue, valuing the Grand Central-area office building at $1.25 billion.

Werner put together a syndicate of investors to buy a stake from owners RXR Realty and Walton Street Capital, sources told The Real Deal.

Scott Rechler’s RXR Realty and Walton Street – the Chicago-based real estate private equity firm – will retain the remaining 60 percent ownership stake in the building, according to Real Estate Alert, which first reported news of the contract.

A Cushman & Wakefield team led by Adam Spies and Doug Harmon brokered the deal on behalf of the sellers.

The transaction values the 1.25 million-square-foot building at $1,000 per square foot.

RXR and Walton bought the 21-story building out of bankruptcy in 2013 for $800 million, and invested $100 million in renovations. Then, in 2017, Walton Street put its 49-percent ownership stake up for sale.

But the investment-sales market tanked that year, and the partners decided to refinance the property with an $850 million loan. (Werner will assume a proportional share of that debt.)

Last year, RXR and Walton Street again returned to the market, this time looking to sell 237 Park Avenue in its entirety.

The building is 98 percent occupied, with tenants including New York Presbyterian Hospital, J.P. Morgan and J. Walter Thompson.

Werner, meanwhile, teamed up with Alexandria Real Estate Equities and DWS Group last year to buy Pfizer’s headquarters at 219 and 235 East 42nd Street for $357 million – another deal brokered by the Cushman team.