The Real Deal Tristate

Thor is breaking into the life sciences industry

Company seeding new division with $152M purchase of New Jersey life science complex
By Eddie Small | August 02, 2019 04:45PM

Thor's Joseph Sitt and the New Jersey Center of Excellence

Thor’s Joseph Sitt and the New Jersey Center of Excellence

Thor Equities is launching a new company division specializing in the life sciences industry called Thor Sciences, the company announced on Friday.

The starting point for the new division is Thor’s recent $152 million purchase of a life science complex in Bridgewater, New Jersey called The Center of Excellence that spans 48 acres and 784,000 square feet. Anchor tenants in the complex include Nestlé Health Science, Ashland and Amneal Pharmaceuticals. Thor plans to expand the center by at least 1 million square feet at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.

Thor has brought on Bill Hunter to be senior vice president of Thor Sciences. He has previously worked on about $4 billion worth of acquisitions across millions of square feet in markets including Boston, Miami, San Francisco and San Diego.

Hunter said in a statement that he looks forward to making Thor “the leading authority in the life sciences industry.”

Newmark’s Kevin Welsh negotiated the sale, and the firm’s Jordan Roeschlaub and Dustin Stolly arranged a $92 million acquisition loan from Citibank, according to a source.

New York has struggled in recent years to keep up with the life sciences market in cities like Boston and San Francisco, although the city does still have some major properties in the industry. These include the Alexandria Center for Life Sciences at 430 East 29th Street and Taconic Investment Partners’ and Silverstein Properties’ life science hub at 619 West 54th Street on Manhattan’s Far West Side.

Thor is better known for its retail portfolio, although that aspect of its business has been struggling lately. The firm is in default on a $17 million loan backed by 1006 Madison Avenue, and special servicers have taken over a $30 million CMBS Thor loan behind 545 Madison Avenue and a $37 million mortgage at 115 Mercer Street.