Action! Hackman, Square Mile Strike $1.85B Deal for CBS Studio

The partners will add to a portfolio of major production facilities on both coasts.

ViacomCBS Inc. confirmed reports on Tuesday that it will sell CBS Studio Center in Los Angeles and its associated operating business to Hackman Capital Partners LLC and Square Mile Capital for $1.85 billion.

Two weeks ago, the Wall Street Journal reported that the property, which sits on a 55-acre site in Studio City and comprises more than 1 million square feet of studios, offices and third-party tenant space, would sell for $1.8 billion. The higher-than-expected price is indicative of the intense demand for studio space.

Photo by David von Diemar via Unsplash

The transaction is part of CBS’ portfolio optimization, which also included the $760 million sale of the CBS Building in Manhattan to Harbor Group International. CBS Broadcasting will enter into a long-term lease-back of the Broadcast Center.

Viacom CBS will continue to occupy stages at the facility. As the company relocates employees, it will enter into a short-term sale-leaseback of other parts of the property.

Los Angeles-based Hackman Capital Partners LLC has been buying studio space since 2014 and building it through its MBS Group affiliate. According to the company’s website, Hackman, in partnership with Square Mile Capital, owns $7.5 billion of studio assets, including Television City, which it purchased from CBS in 2019.

Elsewhere in Los Angeles, Hackman and Square Mile Capital own MBS Media Campus and Sony Pictures Animation Studios. Other properties in the partners’ U.S. portfolio include Kaufman Astoria Studios and Silvercup Studios in Queens, N.Y., and Second Line Stages in New Orleans. The partners also own and operate studios in England and Ireland.

JLL’s Carl Muhlstein and Kevin MacKenzie acted as exclusive brokers on the sale on behalf of ViacomCBS. The transaction’s closing, which includes regulatory approval, is expected to occur by year-end.

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