Chi­nese buy Toronto tower

Ang­bang pays C$110m for 17-story struc­ture

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSS AMERICAS - By AI HEPING in New York

China’s An­bang In­sur­ance Group Inc has paid C$110 ($75 mil­lion) for a 17-story tower in Toronto’s fi­nan­cial dis­trict, and Chi­nese have re­port­edly pur­chased a small of­fice tower in down­town Van­cou­ver for $122 mil­lion.

An­bang is pur­chas­ing the prop­erty at 70 York Street from Canada’s Brook­field As­set Man­age­ment af­ter a heated auc­tion in which there were bids from about 10 par­ties, many of them Cana­dian pen­sion plans, peo­ple close to the sit­u­a­tion said, the Fi­nan­cial Times re­ported Aug 1. An­bang will also as­sume $40 mil­lion in debt, the news­pa­per said.

The Fi­nan­cial Post re­ported on Oct 1 that Chi­nese ac­quired the 212,000 square foot United King­dom build­ing at 409 Granville Street. The deal has yet to close, so de­tails re­main scarce other than that the was from main­land China, ac­cord­ing to the re­port in the busi­ness sec­tion of the Na­tional Post news­pa­per.

“It sold for more (than) $600 a square foot,” said one source, who said that might be 50 per cent more than the go­ing rate for sim­i­lar of­fice build­ings in the area, ac­cord­ing to the re­port. “When I heard the num­ber, I thought ‘no way.’ But the thing is it’s right on top of a Sky­Train sta­tion. I think the Chi­nese are buy­ing the land for spec­u­la­tion as much as the build­ing.”

An­bang paid $1.95 bil­lion for the Wal­dorf As­to­ria Ho­tel in New York a year ago, and also ac­quired a Fifth Av­enue of­fice build­ing in midtown Man­hat­tan’s Plaza Ho­tel dis­trict.

The Cana­dian tower, known as the HSBC Build­ing, was built in the 1990s and was owned by Brook­field Canada Of­fice Prop­er­ties, a Toronto-based unit of Brook­field As­set Man­age­ment, ac­cord­ing to Bloomberg News. In De­cem­ber 2012, the com­pany re­fi­nanced the debt on the build­ing for $45 mil­lion with a 10-year term.

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