MGR pays $54M for Irvine office building, OC’s top price this year

Ontario firm plans to keep buying, confident people will return to work

MGR buys 271K sf office building in Irvine for $54M

MGR Real Estate CEO Michael Rademaker and 2020 Main Street in Irvine (Getty, LinkedIn, Google Maps)

MGR Real Estate has picked up a 271,100-square-foot office tower in Irvine for $53.7 million, nearly a quarter less than it was traded for nearly a quarter century ago but still the highest price paid for an OC office property this year.

The Ontario-based investor led by Michael Rademaker bought the 12-story building at 2020 Main Street, the Orange County Business Journal reported. The seller was PGIM, the New Jersey-based real estate arm of Prudential Financial.

The deal works out to $198 per square foot, 23 percent less than its last traded price.

A PGIM fund bought the Class A building, in the 48-acre Irvine Concourse near John Wayne Airport, in 2001 for $70 million, or $258 per square foot. The seller was its developer, Opus.

Hankey Capital provided MGR with a $33 million loan to buy the complex just north of the 405 Freeway, according to MGR. Terms of the loan were not disclosed. 

At the time of sale, the building was 44 percent occupied, according to the firm. Since then, MGR has signed 27,000 square feet of new leases, including an unidentified tenant for the 12th floor. 

Notable tenants include PwC, New York Life Insurance, Voit Real Estate Services and Pure Financial Advisors. 

MGR aims to bring its occupancy up to 80 percent.

“We’re confident that the OC market is recovering, and people are coming back to work,” Rademaker, CEO of MGR, told the Business Journal. “OC is one of the nicest places in the country to live and work.

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“It would be foolish to not take advantage of the properties here when they’re, quite frankly, on sale.”

Office vacancy in Orange County was 14.3 percent in the first quarter, according to the Business Journal.

In October, locally based Greenlaw Partners bought back the 13-story, 315,000-square-foot office tower next door at 2050 Main Street for $57.5 million, or $183 per square foot. That’s nearly half what it traded for a dozen years ago.

The purchase by MGR marks its second major office deal in OC. In July, the firm bought the five-building, 553,000-square-foot Canvas Costa Mesa at 3070 and 3100 Bristol Street for $91.5 million, or $165 per square foot.

In January last year, the firm bought a 147,700-square-foot office tower in Ontario for $39 million, or $265 a square foot.

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The company is on the hunt for more offices in OC. “We’re not stopping,” Rademaker told the Business Journal.

MGR, founded by Rademaker in 1983, owns and manages 3 million square feet of office and retail properties in the Inland Empire, plus a portfolio of nearly 17,000 apartments.

— Dana Bartholomew

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