By Andrew Gomes
Advertiser Staff Writer
Alexander & Baldwin Inc. has sold three Washington state properties for $15.6 million, and will reinvest the proceeds in other real estate opportunities, the Honolulu-based company announced yesterday.
Subsidiary A&B Properties Inc. completed the deal last week, selling a Bainbridge Island shopping center and two nearby buildings to Joshua Green Corp., a Seattle-based family investment trust.
The transaction is part of an ongoing strategy to grow A&Bs real estate business by selling mature properties and buying more real estate in markets with growth potential, especially Hawaii, according to the company.
Since 1999, A&B has acquired nine Hawaii properties for about $155 million. It expects to soon complete its purchase of the Kapiolani Boulevard office building Pacific Guardian Tower.
By comparison, the company has purchased $55 million worth of real estate on the Mainland over the same period, including a 900,000-square-foot industrial complex in Ontario, Calif.
"Certainly, our focus is on Hawaii," said Norb Buelsing, A&B Properties executive vice president. "One of the determinants is where is there value."
A&B acquired the Washington shopping center in 1990 as the areas real estate market struggled. The company bought a nearby office building in 1997, and built an 8,400-square-foot retail building in 1998 to expand the 100-percent-occupied shopping center.
"Our acquisitions and subsequent development activities coincided with strong economic growth in the area, ultimately increasing their value and creating a portfolio that was attractive to other investors," said A&B President W. Allen Doane.
A&B owns about 90,000 acres of residential, commercial and industrial property in Hawaii, and mostly industrial/warehouse property on the Mainland.
A&B Properties is the property management and development subsidiary of Alexander & Baldwin, which also ownsMatson Navigation Co. and Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. and Kauai Coffee Co.
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