Commercial Real Estate, Capital, Insurance, Leasing & Management

Tower sale will sizzle as market heats up

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The potential sale of the SunTrust Financial Centre in downtown Tampa could set a new high benchmark for office properties in the urban core

The potential sale of the SunTrust Financial Centre in downtown Tampa could set a new high benchmark for office properties in the urban core.

Real estate source say that Highwoods Properties, which is based in Raleigh, North Carolina and has a large presence in Tampa, is in talks to buy the tower.

A Highwoods executive declined comment.

If and when a transaction closes, the deal will likely be a record-setter for Tampa, said Chris Butler, a managing director with Franklin Street.

“Whoever the buyer is, they probably are going to close on this thing at a record number and only way to recoup that is to raise rental rates,” he said.

The buzz in the market, Butler said, is that the tower has been highly coveted by investors.

“There’s been a ton of competition for this and other buildings,” he said. “Based on all our intel, this will go for a record.

It’s one of the best buildings, in Tampa and clearly downtown, and it’s been highly sought after. The office market right now is very hot.”

A Miami group recently paid $70 million for downtown’s Rivergate Tower.

The SunTrust Financial Centre is one of downtown Tampa’s most iconic structures. It is on the market as part of a 15-property portfolio that Atlanta-based Brookdale Group is selling. Raleigh-based Highwoods Properties is in talks to buy the tower, real estate sources say. Sources did not know if Highwoods is in pursuit of the portfolio or only the tower.

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