California Firm Buys 15 GR Buildings

January 2, 2003
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GRAND RAPIDS — A commercial real estate firm based in Irvine, Calif., bought 15 industrial properties in metro Grand Rapids from a Chicago-based company.

Sperry Van Ness Equities recently purchased 1.86 million square feet of space from First Industrial Realty for $49 million, making it perhaps the largest industrial real estate deal ever recorded in West Michigan. The transaction closed on Dec. 26.

“SVN Equities is aggressively looking to expand its presence outside the western United States. This portfolio provided a great opportunity in a thriving market,” said Rand Sperry, CEO of SVN Equities, of the firm’s first purchase east of the Mississippi River.

Six of the fifteen buildings are 200,000 square feet or larger. The entire portfolio has an occupancy rate of 75 percent. The purchase makes SVN Equities the third largest owner of industrial properties in the metro area.

Mark Mimms, senior associate for Sperry Van Ness, represented the buyer. Duke Suwyn and John Kuiper of Grubb & Ellis/Paramount Properties of Grand Rapids represented the seller.

Details on this major transaction will be in Monday’s Business Journal.           

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