“Less than 18 months after buying Apple’s flagship store on the Chicago River, a Chicago investment firm is cashing out in one of the city’s most expensive retail real estate deals ever,” Alby Gallun reports for Crain’s Chicago Business. “Walton Street Capital has agreed to sell the glassy store on Michigan Avenue to Invesco, a big Atlanta-based investment firm, for about $79 million, according to a person familiar with the transaction. The 20,048-square-foot store, acclaimed for its elegant simplicity, has become a destination for shoppers and gawkers alike since it opened amid much hoopla in 2017.”
“Walton Street, a private-equity firm founded by former JMB Realty boss Neil Bluhm, took over the store in October 2017 in a $360 million deal that included the neighboring 35-story office tower at 401 N. Michigan Ave. The firm didn’t waste any time pursuing a return on its investment, hiring brokerage firm Eastdil Secured last March to sell the Apple store,” Gallun reports. “The investment is a safe bet on a premier retail tenant locked into a 15-year lease, one reason the property is worth so much. The sale also includes a small riverfront space leased to Shoreline Sightseeing, which offers tours by boat on the Chicago River and Lake Michigan.”
“The Apple store cost more than $80 million to build, but Apple covered the bulk of that expense,” Gallun reports. “This year, Apple pays annual rent of $124.70 per square foot, or $2.5 million, and its rent increases 10 percent every five years, according to a marketing document for the property.”
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MacDailyNews Take: Now there’s a tidy profit.
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