News Article | 1/6/2010

Hillwood Investment Strikes, Acquires 2M SF


FORT WORTH, TX-Hillwood Investment Properties has bulked up its portfolio with the acquisition of assets in Southern California and North Texas. Through separate deals, local company bought the 659,340-square-foot Frankford Trade Center in Carrollton, TX from LNR Partners Inc. and in a separate deal, acquired the 415,825-square-foot Northgate Building 10 and 609,499-square-foot Northgate Building 11 in San Bernardino, CA from Blackrock Realty.

Tal Hicks, president of Hillwood Investment Properties, tells that the attraction with both deals was the “price per pound” at which the vacant assets were purchased in the all-cash transaction. Hicks declined to discuss a sales price, though did acknowledge the purchase price was a substantial discount to replacement costs.


Frankford Trade Center at 1649 W. Frankford Rd., was built in 1999 and once served as the headquarters for Home Interiors & Gifts Inc. The company inked a sale-leaseback deal in late 2006 with First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. and UBS Realty Investors, but filed for bankruptcy in 2008, The warehouse-office building, valued by the Denton Central Appraisal District at $17.7 million, was foreclosed on last summer.


“We’ll spend approximately $1 million on the building,” Hicks says. “It’s a second-generation building that needs work done.” The work in question, he continues, will include cosmetics, such as interior and exterior painting.


Hicks goes on to say that the California properties, Northgate Building 10 at 927 E. 9th St. and Northgate Building 11 at 7776 Tippecanoe Ave. were completed in June 2009, and won’t require anything in the way of upgrades. The California buildings are adjacent to Hillwood’s AllianceCalifornia development in San Bernardino, CA.


With these properties safely in its portfolio, Hillwood Investment is on the hunt for more, and Hicks says the company wants to make similar acquisition in Texas, California and other markets. The investor’s sweet spot is vacant industrial buildings in excellent locations.


“They don’t have to be brand new, they could be second generation, though we like first generation,” Hicks adds. “But if we can get a substantial discount to replacement cost for a well-located, functional building, we’ll be looking at it.”