Grubb & Ellis To Be Acquired By BGC

Commercial real estate service giant Grubb & Ellis has entered into a letter of intent to sell its assets to BGC Partners as part of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing. Federal Bankruptcy Court documents the firm’s value at about $34.8 million plus additional, undefined amounts.

A broker of securities in wholesale financial markets, BCG entered exclusive talks with Grubb & Ellis in January of this year. The talks, aimed at producing a debt or equity financing agreement or acquisition of the Santa Ana-based firm ended their exclusive period without a deal.  In a February 1 filing,  Grubb & Ellis extended the talks.

Previous attempts at a deal with C-III Capital Partners and Colony Capital LLC ended January 15th without an agreement. Grubb & Ellis was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange on January 6.

BGC is on something of a commercial property firm shopping spree. After its recent acquisition of  Newmark Knight Frank, the New York-based financial brokerage is positioned to become a major player in the CRE market with the new pickup. BGC has holdings around the globe and delivers services, liquidity and contracts to financial markets including hedge funds and energy markets.

Grubb & Ellis’s more than 100 company-owned and affiliate offices employ over 4,000, and completed more than 12,000 sale and lease transactions in 2011.  The firm manages over 250 million square feet of property.  It had been hard-hit by the 2007 recession as well as a 2007 merging with NNN Realty Advisors, which some observers blame for the firm’s decisive weakening.

Grubb & Ellis begain as a single California real estate office in 1958 to become one of the world’s largest real estate brokerage firms.

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