Sears headquarters sold to Compass Datacenters for $194M

Massive campus in Chicago area will be demolished to make way for data center

Sears Headquarters Sold to Compass Datacenters For $194 Million
Compass Data Center CEO Chris Crosby with 3333 Beverly Road in Hoffman Estates, Illinois (Loopnet, Compass Data Center)

Compass Datacenters is hoping its latest purchase gives it a good life at a great price.

The Dallas-based firm bought Sears’ Chicago-area headquarters for $194 million, CoStar reported.

The 197-acre property, located at 3333 Beverly Road in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, has long been home to Sears’ massive 2.4-million-foot campus of interconnected buildings. 

However, those buildings are slated for demolition to make way for high-powered data centers designed for cloud data storage, highlighting the trend of taking outdated corporate campuses and finding new purposes for them.

It’s also part of a broader nationwide trend driven by historically low office demand and an increasing need for data storage and logistics facilities. Dermody Properties is currently in the process of replacing Allstate’s former offices near Chicago with warehouses, the outlet reported.

In August, a Denver-based Vantage Data Centers proposed 1.7-million-square-foot campus, is projected to be located in Douglasville, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported

The Sears sale was facilitated by Colliers International brokers Suzanne Serino, Anne Dempsey, Jason Simon, and Dougal Jeppe on behalf of the seller.

Sears, once a retail giant, has been downsizing since its move to Hoffman Estates from the Sears Tower (now Willis Tower) in Chicago in 1992. 

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Transformco, Sears’ parent company, had been actively seeking a buyer for the property since late 2021.

Hoffman Estates officials formally announced the sale, shedding light on a transaction that had initially been reported by Crain’s Chicago Business in July but kept the price undisclosed until now. The $194 million sale was finalized on a recent Tuesday.

Compared to the $1 million-per-acre price Dermody paid for the former Allstate headquarters campus in Glenview, Illinois, this acquisition may seem like a relative bargain. 

Compass Datacenters has yet to publicly unveil its specific plans for the site, but it’s clear that data centers are in the works, the outlet said.

The site’s transformation into data centers aligns with a trend in the region, as several companies have already established or are in the process of developing data centers in Hoffman Estates and nearby areas. While data centers may not create numerous jobs, the redevelopment is expected to generate substantial property tax revenue.

Hoffman Estates officials have amended zoning for the business park to allow data centers as a permitted use, making this transition easier. However, Compass Datacenters will still need site plan approval from the village.

— Ted Glanzer