85 Challenger Road in Ridgefield Park — Courtesy: The KABR Group
By Joshua Burd
The KABR Group has sold a 233,000-square-foot office building in Ridgefield Park, the longtime home of Samsung’s U.S. headquarters, in a deal brokered by JLL.
The seller and capital markets team on Tuesday announced the sale of the property, 85 Challenger Road, to Asia Investment Management Inc. for an undisclosed price. The deal marks the first acquisition for the Seoul, South Korea-based investment firm, providing it with a blue-chip tenant that recently extended its full-building lease.
“The investment opportunity was appealing to both domestic and offshore capital given the credit and term remaining which provides a predictable cash flow for the buyer,” said Jose Cruz, a senior managing director with JLL. “We are pleased to see more overseas equity pursue commercial real estate transactions in the state of New Jersey.”
Cruz represented the seller and procured the buyer alongside Senior Managing Director Kevin O’Hearn, senior directors Steve Simonelli and Michael Oliver and Director J.B. Bruno, all of JLL.
KABR acquired 85 Challenger, part of the Overpeck Corporate Center, in June 2009 after AIG had foreclosed on the property. The asset was completely vacant at the time of the all-cash transaction, the firm said, noting that it later acquired three other distressed office buildings in the complex.
The private equity firm would go on to spend several years and tens of millions of dollars to upgrade the buildings and improve the surrounding area. For its part, Samsung Electronics America Inc. has been based at Overpeck Corporate Center since 1991 and has spent more than 10 years at 85 Challenger Road, where it has invested millions of dollars and signed a lease extension last fall.
The electronics giant has some 950 employees at 85 Challenger Road and several hundred more at neighboring buildings, according to a news release. The 1 million-square-foot Overpeck Corporate Center is 97 percent occupied and home to more than 3,500 employees overall.
KABR will continue to manage 85 Challenger on behalf of AIM.
“KABR is proud to have partnered with Samsung during the past 11 years and excited for the continued collaboration with new owners — A.I.M. — in their first U.S. acquisition” said Kenneth Pasternak, chairman and CEO of KABR Group.
The 60-acre office park, which features its own exit on Interstate 95, is minutes from the George Washington Bridge and the Lincoln Tunnel and is adjacent to Bergen County’s 805-acre Overpeck County Park. Other amenities within the complex include the AMC Ridgefield Park movie complex and a Hilton Garden Inn.