Swiss buyer drops $21M on Fulton Market offices

An overseas buyer pays over $350 psf for second time this summer

Metonic Real Estate Solutions' Bob Dean with 217 North Jefferson Street (Metonic Real Estate Solutions, LoopNet)
Metonic Real Estate Solutions' Bob Dean with 217 North Jefferson Street (Metonic Real Estate Solutions, LoopNet)

A foreign buyer paid more than $350 per square foot for Chicago loft offices in Fulton Market, the second time this summer that an overseas investor hit that mark.

Bob Dean’s Nebraska-based Metonic Real Estate Solutions sold the 59,000-square-foot building at 217 North Jefferson Street for $21 million, according to a person familiar with the deal, whose price hasn’t previously been reported. The buyer is a wealthy Swiss investor whose name hasn’t been disclosed in public records.

Dean’s company bought the building in 2015 for $14.5 million, the same year that Google opened its Midwest headquarters and set off a wave of commercial redevelopment that sent property values soaring in the former meatpacking district. Metonic didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The six-story property includes 40 surface-level parking spaces, providing its new owner potential to redevelop the asset and add rentable space.

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The Swiss buyer paid $357 per square foot, only a bit more than a Spanish investor paid to the northeast of Fulton Market. That investor, whose identity has similarly been shielded from public records, paid $14.4 million, or $351 per square foot, in a sale-leaseback of the office lofts at 311 West Walton Street occupied by marketing firm AgencyEA, in the Near North Side.

The Fulton Market building isn’t fully occupied like the Near North Side building. A listing shows a space slightly larger than 10,000 square feet is available for lease, giving the Swiss investor a chance to land a tenant and generate more rental revenue than the property yields now.

The Jefferson Street building was built in 1938 and was well-known as the Schwinn Bicycle Company headquarters, with the company using the name Arnold, Schwinn, & Co. at the time, according to the lease listing.

Keely Polczynski and Blake Johnson of CBRE represented Metonic in the sale.

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