Mission West Closes on $115M in Financing

Putting up 20 commercial R&D properties totaling approximately 1.6 million square feet as collateral, Mission West Properties Inc. has secured $115 million in financing from entities associated with Hartford Insurance Co. The Northern California-based REIT locked in a fixed rate of 6.21 percent on the 10-year term loan, which will be amortized over 20 years. Mission West utilized proceeds from the refinancing to repay short-term debt and a loan from Prudential Insurance Co. of America that was scheduled to mature on Oct. 15, 2008. As for repayment of its previous loan obligation, Mission West had originated the 10-year $130 million commercial mortgage loan secured by the cross-collateralized industrial portfolio in October 1998. As of the close of the second quarter of this year, the REIT’s principal balance owed on the loan totaled approximately $111.3 million. Mission West cites its current balance sheet and its portfolio’s geographic focus on thriving Silicon Valley submarkets, as factors in achieving financing in a frosty lending climate. According to commercial real estate services firm Grubb & Ellis Co., the tech industry is bolstering Silicon Valley’s industrial market, which recorded a vacancy rate of 10.8 percent at the close of the second quarter, the area’s lowest vacancy rate in at least two years.Despite the solid Silicon Valley market, Mission West remained realistic about the possibility of getting its hands on a loan in a timely fashion. In its second quarter earnings filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the company noted that securing a replacement financing deal in advance of maturity was expected, but certainly not guaranteed. Had the company not closed such a deal, it would have been subject to suffering material adverse effects, including the prevention of stockholder distributions, as per to the filing. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Mission West is a self-managed, self-administered and fully integrated REIT that develops, manages, leases and markets commercial R&D assets located primarily in San Francisco’s Silicon Valley market. Presently, the company manages a portfolio of 111 properties accounting for an aggregate 8 million square feet, 854,000 of which is in the process of being rezoned for residential development.