Google Completes Deal for New York Office Building

Google Inc., owner of the world’s most popular search engine, completed the purchase of New York’s 111 Eighth Ave. as the company expands its presence in Manhattan.

Taconic Investment Partners, Jamestown Properties and the New York State Common Retirement Fund sold the building, the companies said in a statement today. They didn’t disclose terms.

Google agreed to pay about $1.8 billion for the property, where it is the largest tenant, a person with knowledge of the deal said earlier this month. That would make it the biggest transaction this year involving a single U.S. building, according to Real Capital Analytics Inc., a New York-based real estate research firm.

“This is a great real estate investment in a thriving neighborhood and fantastic city,” David Radcliffe, Google’s vice president of real estate and workplace services, wrote on the company’s blog. “We’re excited to continue to build our presence there.”

Google, based in Mountain View, California, hired Taconic’s management company to operate the building, Radcliffe said.

The company’s shares rose $2.42 to $605.49 at 4 p.m. New York time in Nasdaq Stock Market trading. The stock has fallen

2.3 percent this year.

The building at 111 Eighth takes up an entire block between West 15th and 16th streets in the Chelsea section of Manhattan, south of Midtown. The former industrial warehouse has 2.94 million square feet (273,000 square meters), according to Real Capital. At that size, it has more floor space than the Empire State Building.

Expansion Plans

Google, with more than 2,000 employees in the neighborhood, occupies about 550,000 square feet at 111 Eighth. The company intends to take more space as it becomes available, the person with knowledge of the deal said Dec. 2.

Poornima Gupta, a spokeswoman for Google, declined to comment on the occupancy plans.

Other tenants in the building include WebMD, Nike Inc., Deutsche Advertising, Lifetime Networks, and Armani Exchange. Taconic acquired it in 1998 and did $68 million of capital improvements, the sellers said in their statement.

The building, completed in 1932, was originally a freight terminal serving the city’s Hudson River piers.

The sellers were represented by Doug Harmon, senior managing director at Eastdil Secured LLC. Google was represented by Stephen Siegel, Darcy Stacom and William Shanahan of CB Richard Ellis Group Inc.

(Adds Google share trading in sixth paragraph.)
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