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December 9, 2013

Lexington Realty Buys $53M Portfolio of Vet Offices

By Scott Baltic, Contributing Editor

vet 2Lexington Realty Trust, of New York, has bought, for $52.6 million, a pack of 10 clinics operated by BluePearl Veterinary Partners, the nation’s leading 24-hour emergency pet care provider, Stan Johnson Co., Tulsa, Okla., which represented both parties in the sale-leaseback, announced Friday.

The cross-collateralized, long-term master lease covers more than 139,000 square feet of emergency care medical space and administrative offices. The 10 properties, which include one under construction, are in Tampa (three), Brandon and Clearwater, Fla.; Atlanta; Northfield, Ill.; Ann Arbor and Southfield, Mich.; and Houston, Joshua Pardue, associate director in SJC’s New York office, told Commercial Property Executive.

“This transaction is significant due to the low benchmark cap rate achieved for a small-cap company, the unique nature of the veterinary use and the complexity of the master-lease structure,” Pardue said in a release.

His further comments suggest that it took dogged work to close the transaction: “This structure had to address a diverse national real estate portfolio with challenging nuances on multiple assets and be completed in two closings. SJC is pleased to have structured a transaction that helped capitalize a tremendous veterinary organization … and to structure a win-win that facilitated the investment objectives of Lexington.”

The closings took place two and three weeks ago, Pardue told CPE. The cap rate was not disclosed.

The predecessor of BluePearl was formed in 2008 through the merger of veterinary operations in Tampa, New York and metro Kansas City. Large veterinary practices in Michigan and Georgia merged into the privately owned company in 2010, and the BluePearl name was adopted in 2011.

The most recent merger, in November, added a veterinary hospital in Waltham, Mass. The company currently operates more than 30 hospitals in 13 states and employs more than 350 veterinarians.

In 25 years, SJC has completed more than $14.8 billion in net-lease transactions.

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