Built by Fisher Brothers in 1963, the 44-story office tower at 605 Third Avenue has long attracted high-profile tenants thanks to its location near Grand Central Terminal and the United Nations.
Fisher Brother retains a 51 percent stake in the building and manages it, while the remaining ownership interest has changed hands twice in the past decade.
Rockpoint Group bought the 49 percent stake from National Bulk Carriers in late 2013 and about a year later sold it to JPMorgan Asset Management. Last fall, JPMorgan put its stake on the market, eying a price that would value the entire property at about $600 million.
In the meantime, the landlords have secured new financing for the building, with Morgan Stanley providing a $400 million loan package including $309 million in CMBS debt. Documents associated with the securitization of that debt provide an inside look at the property’s finances.
As of October, the 1.1 million-square-foot building was 97 percent leased to 25 office tenants and five retail tenants. The property’s occupancy has averaged 95 percent over the past 25 years, and its average in-place base rent of $67 per square foot is significantly below the Grand Central submarket average of $80, according to a DBRS Morningstar report, providing a cushion in case market rents fall.
The top tenant at 605 Third is Spanish-language media giant Univision, which has been headquartered there since 2013 and accounts for about a fifth of the building’s rent roll. A large portion of Univision’s space is subleased to other tenants at rents between $41 and $52 per square foot, according to a loan prospectus.
The second largest tenant is the United Nations Population Fund, a U.N. agency dedicated to worldwide reproductive and maternal health. The agency moved to the building in 2018 and its rent of $52 per square foot is the lowest among the 10 largest tenants.
The tenant with the third-most space is fintech firm Broadridge Financial, which moved in last February. The company, whose services include processing proxy votes for shareholder meetings, had previously consolidated several offices at Vornado Realty Trust’s One Park Avenue.
Since the start of the pandemic, five tenants at the property — representing 14 percent of the square footage — have been granted rent deferrals, and one of those tenants also received forgiveness for half of its rent from August through December.
The recent refinancing of the building included a $91 million mezzanine loan from Morgan Stanley, which has been sold to a third party, according to loan documents. The new financing paid off $190 million in existing debt on the property, returning $202 million in cash equity to the landlord.