Mutual of America Recaps Manhattan Tower
Munich RE purchased a minority stake in the property.
Mutual of America has closed on the recapitalization of 320 Park Ave., a 766,000-square-foot office building in Manhattan.
JLL’s Frank Doyle, David Giancola, David Kleiner and Andrew Scandalios represented the owner in arranging a joint venture with Munich RE, which acquired a minority interest in the property. Munich RE was advised by MEAG, its asset manager, and EastBanc, which helped facilitate the transaction.
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320 Park Ave. was built in the early 1960s and designed by Emery Roth & Sons. Later in 1992, Mutual of America acquired 320 Park Ave. with plans to gut and fully rebuild the office tower. More recently, the company completed a $35 million refurbishment that added a gym, renovated the lobby and cafe, and created more than 25,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor amenity space. A private restaurant on the 16th floor is scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2022.
The Class A office tower is currently home to the headquarters of Mutual of America, alongside several office and retail tenants, like financial services firm Raymond James. Back in 2017, a number of companies relocated their offices out of 320 Park Ave., including Mizuho and Eos Management LP.
Long-term strategy for 320 Park
Giancola said in prepared remarks that both Mutual of America and Munich RE have a similar long-term mindset and are committed to the iconic office building. Prior to acquiring its stake in 320 Park Ave., Munich RE already had some experience with Manhattan office towers with a similar vintage. In 2019, the German insurance company purchased the 39-story office high-rise at 330 Madison Ave., which is also located in Midtown East and was built in 1963.
Giancola also said the recapitalization underscored the confidence of global investors in the future of the New York City office market. The sector did see a downturn following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and work-from-home mandates but has since mostly recovered. The fourth-quarter report from JLL showed that the New York City office market ended 2021 with much better leasing fundamentals compared to last year, with a stabilized asking rent at around $76.50 per square foot and a 14.6 percent vacancy rate.
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