Vanbarton Pays Hefty Price for SF Office Tower

100 Montgomery St. reportedly fetched a price more than 70 percent higher than it did in 2012 when Blackstone acquired the asset.
100 Montgomery St., San Francisco

100 Montgomery St., San Francisco

San FranciscoVanbarton hits San Francisco in a buying binge that has been ongoing since its launch in July 2015. The real estate investment company recently acquired 100 Montgomery St., a 429,000-square-foot office tower in the city’s North Financial District, from the Blackstone Group.

Vanbarton and Blackstone are keeping mum on the financial details of the transaction for the time being, but some media reports put the price at $285 million. However, a more recent article by San Francisco’s The Registry cites sources who refute the publicized figure, asserting that the actual sale price was $279 million. Whether the more actual number is $279 million or $285 million, 100 Montgomery fetched roughly 70 percent more than it did in 2012, when Blackstone Real Estate Partners VII acquired the asset from Hines and Sterling American Property for $126 million.

There are more than a few reasons why 100 Montgomery—originally developed in 1955 as the Equitable Life Insurance headquarters with the address of 120 Montgomery—just brought in the big bucks. By the time Blackstone had acquired the property, it had undergone a total of approximately $54 million in renovations to its office and ground-level retail space. But perhaps of greater importance, the well leased LEED-EB Gold certified property, traditionally a magnet for FIRE (finance, insurance, real estate) business, is fast becoming a hub for technology and creative office users.

“Situated in an unparalleled location with immediate access to public transportation and premier amenities, the building provides the features that tenants are seeking today” William Bond, a managing director with Vanbarton, said in a prepared statement. LinkedIn occupies 135,000 square feet at 100 Montgomery. Digital communications firm Next Fifteen Communications Group and digital consultancy firm SolutionSet have each set up shop in 48,000 square feet.

Vanbarton plans to invest an unspecified sum in improvements at 100 Montgomery. And the company has selected commercial real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield to serve as the exclusive leasing agent for the property.

Indeed, Vanbarton has been a busy bee. Transactions over the last year include the $265 million purchase of the 440,000-square-foot 31 Penn Manhattan office tower, and the $133 million acquisition of the 160,000-square-foot Riverdale Crossing shopping center in the Bronx. The company also took an equity interest in 20 Broad St., an office tower in Manhattan that will be transformed into a mixed-use multifamily and retail destination, for $45 million.

Image courtesy of Yardi Matrix