Extell snags 14 properties from Frank Ring

Portfolio valued as high as $800 million

From left: Frank Ring and Gary Barnett
From left: Frank Ring and Gary Barnett

Extell Development has signed a contract to buy 14 prime properties from Frank Ring, in a deal expected to close in a few months.

While there’s no word yet on exactly how much Extell is paying, investment-sale brokers cited by the New York Post valued the portfolio at between $600 million and $800 million.

Totaling around 1 million square feet, the buildings include mostly vacant 114 East 25th Street and the completely empty 153 West 23rd Street.

Frank Ring, along with his brother Michael, inherited 15 mostly small, pre-war buildings from their father back in 1988. Frank was named portfolio manager, but kept many of the properties vacant for decades. He butted heads with Gary Barnett in 2011 over 20 West 47th Street on the diamond block, where Extell owned a 75 percent stake.

Extell forced an auction to acquire the 25 percent Barnett didn’t own, and later sold the building.

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Brother Michael decided to sell a portion of his 50 percent stake, also in 2011, to investor Joseph Tabak, who later took Michael to court forcing him to follow through after he changed his mind and attempted to back out.

Tabak later sold an option to flip his share to Extell for $74 million, but Frank held fast to his stake, leading Extell to ask for a court-ordered auction yet again.

In this latest round, proceedings set for October 9 were mysteriously postponed until a month later. The reason, according to the New York Post, is that Barnett was attempting to wheel and deal with Frank for the whole caboodle.

“Several would make fine boutique office addresses once they’re fixed up, and some might be just right for hotels,” an insider told the Post.

Extell declined to comment to the Post and Frank Ring could not be reached for comment. [NYP]Julie Strickland