Grosvenor Americas buys Seattle office portfolio

The US arm of the British property firm, led by the Duke of Westminster, has purchased an 11-property portfolio for $167.5 million, marking its first office acquisition in the market.

Grosvenor Americas, the US arm of the British property firm led by the Duke of Westminster, has acquired a portfolio of 11 Class A office buildings in the Seattle suburb of Bothell for $167.5 million. The seller and developer, Schnitzer West, will continue to provide onsite property management. 

In a statement, Grosvenor Americas chief investment officer Michael Beattie explained that the firm acquired the portfolio in order to gain exposure to a high growth area. Located in the Schnitzer North Creek office campus, the portfolio totals 712,460 square feet and represents Grosvenor Americas’ first office acquisition in the Puget Sound area.

“Seattle’s Eastside submarket continues to absorb significant amounts of office space, resulting in the lowest vacancy rate of the five regional market areas,” said James Delmotte, senior vice president of investments at Grosvenor Americas, in a statement. “Controlling a critical mass of office space in Bothell will allow us to actively manage our tenants’ changing space needs.”

Grosvenor Americas also owns nine multifamily communities in the Puget Sound region through direct purchases and joint ventures. Aside from Seattle, the firm’s portfolio includes properties in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington DC, with assets in Brazil and Canada as well. Such properties include 195 apartments in the San Francisco Bay region and 92 live/work rental units in Vancouver. According to the company website, Grosvenor Americas selects properties in regions “well served by public transportation, with strong population growth, an educated workforce and a high-income service sector.” 

Grosvenor Americas invests the Grosvenor family’s money in the acquisition and development of North American properties. According to its annual report, the Calgary-based subsidiary generated a 9.5 percent return in 2012 and had $2.1 billion of assets under management at the end of the year.