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The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Caisse's Ivanhoe and partner buy stake in N.Y. office building for US$150 million

MONTREAL - The Caisse's real-estate group Ivanhoe Cambridge continues to beef up its office ownership in New York City by partnering to buy a 49-per-cent stake in a Manhattan office building for US$150 million.

The real estate arm of the Quebec pension fund manager and Callahan Capital Properties joined forces for a fifth time to acquire the 16-storey midtown building through a joint venture with affiliates of Beacon Capital Partners.

The west side property at 330 Hudson had been upgraded by adding eight floors to the historic stone-and-brick base building.

Ivanhoe vice-president Adam Adamakakis said the change provides a "creative work environment" that is increasingly desirable to the growing technology and media industries in Hudson Square area.

Adamakakis said he hopes "to capitalize on more opportunities in key U.S. markets soon."

Ivanhoe Cambridge and Callahan have invested more than US$2.1 billion in U.S. office properties.

The head of Callahan Capital said the latest addition to Ivanhoe Cambridge/Callahan portfolio "exemplifies our strategy to build a high-quality office platform concentrated in top markets around the country."

The acquisition is Ivanhoe's latest in New York since it spent more than US$850 million last October for a stake in an Avenue of the Americas office tower. Ivanhoe also sold its interest in a Greenwich Street building last month for an undisclosed price.

The real estate subsidiary has been selling its portfolio of 70 hotels in Europe, the U.S., Canada, Barbados and India for about two years to concentrate on retail, office and residential multi-family units that generate more stable returns.

Ivanhoe Cambridge announced last month that it was largely getting out of the hotel business by selling all of its locations except for three luxury hotels in its home province.

Landmark Fairmont hotels Royal York in Toronto and Hotel Vancouver were put on the sale block, joining five other locations destined for sale. They are Fairmont hotels in Victoria, Barbados, Seattle and Washington, D.C., along with the Hilton Downtown Atlanta.

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