Trinity, Norges ink massive Hudson Square deal

Sovereign-wealth fund will partner with church on 5 million square feet of real estate

From left: Norges' Yngve Slyngstad, Jason Pizer and 1 Hudson Square

Trinity Real Estate has found a venture partner for its 11-building portfolio in Hudson Square: Norway’s sovereign-wealth fund, the largest in the world.

The real estate arm of Trinity Wall Street Episcopal Church agreed, in principle, to bring in the $830 billion fund as a partner on 5 million square feet of real estate.

The church’s governing body voted late Wednesday on the deal, Bloomberg News reported Thursday. Financial terms were not disclosed, but sources previously told The Real Deal that the offering could fetch $3 billion. An earlier offering of just four buildings was expected to go for $1.25 billion.

The partnership will enable Trinity “to diversify its real estate assets in order to ensure that it will be able to sustain the hundreds of programs, services and ministries provided by the church in service to millions of people for generations to come,” Betsy Vorce, Trinity’s chief communications officer, said.

Trinity took bids last month from suitors including SL Green Realty, Vornado Realty Trust, Brookfield Property Partners and Ivanhoe Cambridge. CBRE’s Darcy Stacom was marketing the properties.

Norges Bank Investment Management, a division of Norway’s central bank, has been expanding its real estate holdings globally and in New York.

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In February, the fund acquired a 49 percent interest in 11 Times Square, following a $725 million deal in September to buy a 45 percent interest in Citigroup Center at 601 Lexington Avenue from Boston Properties.

Trinity’s ownership of 215 acres of Manhattan real estate dates back to 1705.

1 Hudson Square, with 1.2 million square feet, is the largest of the 11 buildings in Trinity’s offering, which also included 100 Avenue of the Americas, 155 Avenue of the Americas, 10 Hudson Square, 200 Hudson Street, 205 Hudson Street, 345 Hudson Street, 350 Hudson Street, 435 Hudson Street, 225 Varick Street and 16 Vestry Street.

“By reallocating these holdings, Trinity continues its tradition of responsible stewardship for the long-term benefit of our mission, both in New York and beyond,” Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, the church rector, told Bloomberg in an emailed statement. [Bloomberg]E.B. Solomont



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