MetLife provides $725M in financing for Bertelsmann Building, 601 Lexington

MetLife is actively lending, providing a $350 million, five-year, fixed-rate mortgage for a joint venture between affiliates of Edge Fund Advisors and HSBC Alternative Investment at the Bertelsmann Building at 1540 Broadway through its real estate investments department among other investments, the company announced today.

“We are pleased to be providing financing for such a high quality asset as 1540 Broadway,” said Robert Merck, senior managing director and head of real estate investments for MetLife. “We originate, underwrite and manage each investment with a long-term view, and we are well positioned to identify and complete attractive financing opportunities in top-tier markets such as New York.”

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Edge Fund Advisors and HSBC Alternative Investments acquired a 49 percent stake in the 44-story, 907,000-square-foot building from CBRE Investors in a deal valued at $254 million, or $575 per square foot last year. It then bought out the remaining 51 percent stake in the building in an off-market transaction. Tenants include Viacom, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, Duane Morris and Yahoo.

MetLife has been lending extensively at a time when standards are tightening. The company also announced today that it was the lead lender on a $725 million loan for Boston Properties at 601 Lexington Avenue, providing a total of $375 million. — Katherine Clarke