Macklowe office stake taken over by Caisse subsidiary

Otera Capital Corp, part of Canadian pension fund Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, has reportedly bought part of the 1330 Avenue of the Americas building after the property developer defaulted on a $130 million mezzanine loan.

An arm of Canadian pension Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec has bought the office building 1330 Avenue of Americas from Harry Macklowe in a foreclosure auction.

Otera Capital made the minimum required of $100,000 for Macklowe’s stake in the 40-storey property in New York, according to various media reports. Otera assumed the $240 million mortgage.

The auction comes less than a month after Normandy Real Estate Partners and Five Mile Capital Partners bought the John Hancock Building for just $20.1 million, after previous owner Broadway Partners defaulted on its debt. Normandy and Five Mile also assumed the Hancock Building’s $640.5 million mortgage.

At the time, the firms confirmed they had been acquiring discounted pieces of mezzanine debt secured against properties owned by troubled private equity real estate firm, Broadway, since the summer of 2008.

Otera holds a $130 million mezzanine loan on The Financial Times Building. According to a report by Bloomberg, Otera chief executive officer Jean Lamothe said: “We step in basically to protect our investment. Values have come down, that’s for sure.” Otera will assume the $240 million mortgage.

Media reports said that although Otera was the only bidder, several representatives from other real estate companies and pension funds attended the auction to survey the procedure and assess the situation.