Monday, July 7, 2008

HFF Secures $27.4M Bridge Loan for Five-building Office Portfolio in Needham, MA

BOSTON, MA, July 7, 2008 – The Boston office of HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.) announced today that it secured a $27.4 million bridge loan for a five-building, 226,000-square-foot office portfolio in the New England Business Center (top left photo) in Needham, Massachusetts.

Working on behalf of a joint venture between Commonfund Realty and Cabot, Cabot & Forbes, HFF senior managing director Riaz Cassum, (top right photo), director Gregory LaBine (middle left photo and senior real estate analyst Porter Terry placed the three-year, adjustable-rate loan with Wells Fargo Real Estate Group, Inc.

Loan proceeds will allow the client to reposition the portfolio by redeveloping some buildings and releasing others.

“Wells took the time to structure a loan that gave Commonfund and CC&F both the dollars and the flexibility they need to successfully reposition the portfolio and unlock their long-term value.

The quality of the assets and their location, along with the strength and experience of the borrowers allowed us to complete the loan on a largely vacant portfolio in a challenging financial environment,” said Cassum.

The portfolio is located within the 150-acre New England Business Center, adjacent to Route 128 and south of the Massachusetts Turnpike in Needham, approximately eight miles west of downtown Boston. Four of the properties are currently vacant and the fifth is leased to Gold’s Gym.

“Three of the buildings are adjacent to one another with immediate frontage and visibility on Interstate 95/Route 128 presents an opportunity for higher density development. The venture is in the midst of permitting these parcels for a Class A office campus and has had several potential tenants express a strong interest in the project,” added LaBine.

Commonfund Realty, Inc. is the realty arm of Commonfund, the nation’s largest dedicated non-profit investment manager.

Since 1988, Commonfund Realty, Inc. has acquired or overseen developments in more than 18 states throughout the country aggregating more than $3.7 billion in transactions.

Since 1960, Cabot, Cabot & Forbes has developed more than 60 million square feet of space throughout the U.S. including more than 20 million square feet of first-class office space in prestigious urban locations and noted office, mixed-use and transit-oriented developments.

HFF (NYSE: HF) operates out of 18 offices nationwide and is a leading provider of commercial real estate and capital markets services to the U.S. commercial real estate industry. HFF offers clients a fully integrated national capital markets platform including debt placement, investment sales, structured finance, private equity, note sales and note sale advisory services and commercial loan servicing.


Riaz A. Cassum, HFF Senior Managing Director, 617 338 0990,

Gregory F. LaBine, HFF Director, 617 338 0990,

Laurie Fish McDowell, HFF Associate Director, Marketing, 617 338 0990,

HFF Secures $27.19M in Joint venture equity for Class A Multifamily Development in Hollywood

LOS ANGELES, CA, July 7, 2008 – The Los Angeles office of HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.) announced today that it arranged joint venture equity on behalf of JPI, Inc. for Jefferson at Hollywood,(above centered aerial) a Class A multifamily development in Hollywood (Los Angeles), California.

HFF senior managing directors Paul Brindley (top right photo) and Doug Bond (middle right photo) and managing directors Todd Sugimoto (top left photo) and Mark Wintner (bottom left photo) represented JPI, a national multifamily development firm with a $13.7 billion institutional track record.

Fidelity Real Estate Group provided the $27.19 million in joint venture equity for the project.

Upon completion in 2010, Jefferson at Hollywood will have 271 residential units averaging 881 square feet each, 8,500 square feet of ground-level retail space and a subterranean 755-space parking garage.

Amenities at the new complex will include a full-service business center, clubhouse with concierge services, movie theatre, pool, jacuzzi, outdoor grill area, lounge area and fitness center.

Jefferson at Hollywood is located on Highland Avenue adjacent to Hollywood & Highland, an entertainment center that houses the Kodak Theatre (bottom right photo).

The property is also within 500 feet of the MTA Red Line Station, which provides access to downtown Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley.

“Despite ongoing redevelopment efforts in Hollywood, multifamily development in the area has been limited to less than 1,500 units since 1995, accounting for approximately 2% of current inventory,” said Sugimoto. “Jefferson at Hollywood will provide much needed rental housing in an area that is extremely underserved by modern multifamily product.”

Founded in 1989, JPI is dedicated to “Building Quality for Our Customers” and committed to making quality investments and providing the highest level of real estate services. JPI operates regional offices in Irving, Texas; Washington, D.C.; Carlsbad, California; New York; Boston; and Atlanta.

JPI is one of the nation’s largest and most successful multifamily real estate firms with 1,500 associates, providing acquisition, development, construction and asset management services for conventional multifamily and student living communities nationwide.

JPI also provides property management and leasing services for over 40,000 multifamily units across the United States and is the preferred multifamily property manager for RREEF Asset Management Group.

Fidelity Real Estate Group pursues value-added real estate investment opportunities throughout the U.S. on a fully discretionary basis for its managed funds. The Fidelity Real Estate Group is a division of Pyramis Global Advisors, a Fidelity Investments company. Fidelity Real Estate Group manages in excess of $12 billion on behalf of institutional and accredited individual investors as of March 31, 2008.

HFF (NYSE: HF) operates out of 18 offices nationwide and is a leading provider of commercial real estate and capital markets services to the U.S. commercial real estate industry.

HFF offers clients a fully integrated national capital markets platform including debt placement, investment sales, structured finance, private equity, note sales and note sale advisory services and commercial loan servicing.


Paul C. Brindley, HFF Senior Managing Director, 310 407 2100,

Laurie Fish McDowell, HFF Associate Director, Marketing,l 617 338 0990,

Exploitation of Residents at Wasserstein and Lazard-linked Senior Care Facilities Exposed

Lazard CEO Bruce Wasserstein (top right photo) comes under fire as healthcare workers' union informs residents, families that Atria senior care facilities value private equity gain over safety measures;

Robert Greenwald's Brave New Films releases documentary exposing Lazard and Wasserstein greed

NEW YORK, NY July 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) launched an online campaign today to bring attention to ongoing safety concerns at leading assisted living provider Atria Senior Living, as well as the controversial business practices of its parent, Lazard Real Estate Partners, a private equity fund affiliated with Lazard Ltd.

While costs have increased for Atria residents and some Lazard executives celebrate record compensation, problems with resident care persist. Beginning today, Web ads running on some of the world's largest news sites will highlight Atria's gouging of its elderly residents.

"One complaint regarding the safety of residents of Atria facilities is enough to warrant concern," said SEIU president Andy Stern (top left photo).

"The hundreds of complaints we're hearing make it an epidemic. The Lazard private equity fund's mission to squeeze profit out of its companies is responsible for some of the problems at Atria, and the families of the more than 14,000 residents of Atria senior care facilities have both a right and a need to hear about it."

The ads coincide with the online release of a new expose of Bruce Wasserstein by Brave New Films, a new media venture of acclaimed documentary-maker Robert Greenwald.

Ad samples are also available upon request. The film, titled Gouging Grandma: Billionaire Bruce Wasserstein, follows Robin Berson, the daughter of an Atria resident, and Dino Vallenes, a maintenance worker at an Atria facility, as they travel to Bermuda to speak out at Lazard Ltd.'s annual shareholder meeting.

"Lazard can pay its principals princely sums while its affiliates treat the most vulnerable among us this way?" asked Robert Greenwald, founder of Brave New Films. "Not in my book: Wasserstein needs to be called to the mat for his indifference to how cost-cutting hurts Atria residents and workers."
More information on the connections between Lazard, Wasserstein, and Atria Senior Living can also be found on at and

Evan Thies, +1-917-715-9265, for SEIU Healthcare
Web Sites:

The Wells Retail Group of Marcus & Millichap Announces 6.38% Cap Sale of 7-11

Represents Buyers Continued Appetite For Quality

PARKER, CO, July 7, 2008 – Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services has announced the sale of a single tenant 7-11 in Parker, CO for $2,618,000. The sales price represents $856 per square foot and a 6.38% cap rate.

David Wells (top right photo) with the Wells Retail Group of Marcus and Millichap, a top senior associate working out of the firm’s Tampa office, brought the buyer to the property. The seller is a developer based out of Dallas, TX. The buyer is a private investor from Virginia.

“The sale represents a commons theme in the marketplace. Investors are still willing to
come to the table in a challenging market for a true class A asset,” comments Mr. Wells.
“The property’s lease was backed by Southland which is the corporate parent of 7-11 and has outstanding credit. The buyer already owns multiple 7-11’s with corporate guaranteed leases which allows for an elevated level of comfort for them.”

The property is newly developed with the construction being completed in the fall of
2007. It sits in on 1.22 acres on a highly trafficked commercial corridor of Parker, CO.

For more information about the transaction or the state of the commercial real estate market, please contact David Wells at (813) 387-4700.

Marcus & Millichap closes $12.5M Sale of Northwoods Resort in Big Bear, CA

BIG BEAR LAKE, CA – Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has arranged the sale of Northwoods Resort and Conference Center, (middle left photo) a 148-room hotel in Big Bear Lake. The sales price was $12.5 million.

Robert Brauchli (top right photo) and Jigar Patel, both senior associates in the San Diego office of Marcus & Millichap, represented the seller, WWW Asset One Corp.
Scott Clawson, an investment specialist in the firm’s Chicago Downtown office, represented the buyer, McSam Hotel Group. Michael Goldstein of Packard Hospitality also represented the buyer.

“Purchased below replacement cost, Northwoods Resort is an excellent asset with tremendous upside potential. Through a repositioning effort and expansion of vacant, usable space, the new owner will be able to dramatically increase revenues, while cutting expenses,” explains Brauchli.

“The buyer brings a wealth of knowledge to an underperforming asset,” adds Patel. “Through the implementation of a more efficient management and marketing style, the new owner of Northwoods Resort will see tremendous growth in revenues.
Located at 40650 Village Drive, the four-story hotel is situated on 4.77 acres within the village business district and is walking distance to numerous shops, restaurants and Big Bear Lake. In addition, the hotel is only minutes from both Bear Mountain and Snow Summit.

Built in 1995, the 148-room Northwoods Resort and Conference Center is the largest hotel in Big Bear Lake. The property also includes Stillwells Restaurant and Lounge, a gift shop, a pool, whirlpool, sauna, exercise room and an outdoor amphitheatre

Press Contact: Stacey Corso
Communications Department
(925) 953-1716

Harrah's Outlook Revised To Negative On Expected Weak Operating Performance

NEW YORK, NY-- Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has revised its rating outlook on Las Vegas-based Harrah's Entertainment Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary, Harrah's Operating Co. Inc., to negative from stable.

At the same time, we affirmed the 'B+' corporate credit rating on each entity.

"The outlook revision reflects our expectation that operating performance for the remainder of 2008, and likely well into 2009, will remain pressured given weak economic conditions," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Ben Bubeck.Property-level EBITDA declined 7% in the quarter ended March 31, 2008, versus the same period in 2007.

Recent monthly revenue reported across gaming markets appears to show this trend is continuing and may be accelerating, in some cases, as the year progresses.

We expect rising gasoline prices and increasing unemployment rates to continue to impair consumer discretionary spending in the near term. Therefore, the company's ability to meet our projections for property-level EBITDA in 2008, and potentially 2009, now seems questionable.

Media contacts: Mimi Barker, New York (1) 212-438-5054
Analyst Contacts: Ben Bubeck, CFA, New York (1) 212-438-2176
Melissa Long, New York (1) 212-438-3886

REAL ESTATE CHANNEL Launches Commercial Real Estate Video Listing Service

ORLANDO, FL– Media entrepreneur Michael Gerrity,(top right photo) Founder & CEO of the REAL ESTATE CHANNEL( is pleased to announce that as of July 7th the launch of their new Commercial Real Estate Classified Video Ad Service for individual properties for sale or lease - locally or globally.

REAL ESTATE CHANNEL’s new classified video listing service enables any commercial broker or landlord to produce a short :30 second video profiles of each property listing and these video listings into REAL ESTATE CHANNEL’s IPTV video network for viewing on-demand by potential commercial office tenants or investors from anywhere in the world.

In addition, each commercial video listing will also display each property’s sales or leasing data and agent or landlord contact information with a direct link to each advertiser’s site.

Michael Gerrity commented, “We believe that the use of video on the web is becoming a powerful and convenient tool to help potential tenants or investors looking for commercial space to search for and preview various properties for sale or lease from their convenience of their desktops. Because we are 100% web-based, think of us as creating the first full blown video-based MLS system for the entire commercial real estate marketplace in the U.S. and worldwide”.

REAL ESTATE CHANNEL™ is a global broadband television network (“IPTV”)
based in Universal Studios Florida that delivers professionally produced real estate video content to any viewer on any Internet enabled device anywhere in the world, anytime.


Michael Gerrity
Founder & CEO
1000 Universal Studios Plaza, Bldg 22-A
Orlando, Florida 32819
(P) 407.224.6830

Metro Washington, DC Office Sector Absorption Slowing as More Tenants Renew Leases

WASHINGTON, DC--GVA Advantis presents highlights from its second quarter Office Market Review of the metro Washington, DC market. For a complete copy of the report, please contact

Tonya L. Ginter, CCIM, Director of Research & Marketing, 703.790.2127,

Market Highlights:

--The office sector faced slowing absorption and increasing vacancies during the second quarter of 2008, as vacancy rates increased to 10.8 percent from a first quarter rate of 10.1 percent.

--Landlords are granting generous concessions in response to the slowing rate at which new leases are being signed.

--The increased number of renewals is hurting the absorption of new projects.

--While commercial property sales slowed considerably during the first quarter of the year, activity accelerated during the second quarter of 2008.