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Is Banyan Street seeking new partners?

Move to recapitalize Bank of America Plaza and Tampa City Center downtown fueled by Oaktree purchase

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  • | 6:00 a.m. August 30, 2019
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COURTESY PHOTO — Bank of America Plaza owner Banyan Street Capital is working to recapitalize the 42-story tower.
COURTESY PHOTO — Bank of America Plaza owner Banyan Street Capital is working to recapitalize the 42-story tower.
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Don’t be surprised if one or even two of downtown Tampa’s most high-profile office towers have a new ownership structure soon.

That’s because Banyan Street Capital has been actively working to recapitalize its Bank of America Plaza and possibly Tampa City Center skyscrapers with new partners, industry sources say.

The move comes in the wake of a May announcement that Oaktree Capital Management L.P., the Los Angeles-based company that bought the 42-story and 38-story towers with Banyan Street, would be sold to Brookfield Capital Management in a $4.8 billion deal.

Brookfield has been attempting to beef up its asset base — Oaktree has more than $475 billion in assets under management, including debt — to better compete with rival Blackstone Group.

Miami-based Banyan Street has retained commercial real estate brokerage firm CBRE Group to help find new capital partners for Bank of America Plaza, which the pair acquired in December 2015 for $193.5 million. CBRE Vice Chairman Christian Lee and Dale Peterson, a firm senior vice president in Tampa, have been tapped for the assignment.

Neither CBRE nor Banyan Street officials returned telephone calls for comment.

It is likely, too, that Tampa City Center, which the duo purchased in October 2018 for $110 million, could also be recapitalized, sources say. The latter purchase did not include the ground beneath the 201 N. Franklin St. building, however.

The 32-story Rivergate Tower, which Banyan Street bought for $70 million in 2015, is not likely to be impacted because Oaktree is not a partner in that deal.

Taken together, the three buildings make Banyan Street downtown Tampa’s largest office landlord, with 2.05 million square feet.

At least one major recapitalization has apparently already occurred. Earlier this month, Banyan Street and New York financier KKR & Co. Inc. announced they had jointly purchased the Salesforce Tower, in Atlanta, for $205 million.

Banyan Street and KKR acquired the 34-story property from a joint venture between Banyan Street and Oaktree. CBRE handled the transaction on behalf of the sellers.




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