David Sobelman

TAMPA, FL—Chinese investors are getting in on the sale-leaseback action in Tampa, FL. In all all-out bidding war that ended with a deal exceeding the asking price, foreign buyers engaged in a sale-leaseback on a building Educational Symposia Inc. (ESI) occupies.

ESI, a private medical continuing education company, built the single tenant office building in 2005. The firm has used the office space as its headquarters since then. However, the firm wanted to infuse capital into its business and sought Calkain to help broker a sale-leaseback.

“With the equity that ESI had locked in their real estate, Calkain was able to produce a scenario that allowed the company to maintain control of their building for decades while taking advantage of today’s aggressive real estate market prices,” David Sobelman, a managing partner at Calkain, tells GlobeSt.com. The buyer paid $2.18 million and leased the 12,000-plus-square-foot building back to ESI on a 10-year term with two five-year options.

Since the lease was structured with zero landlord responsibility and includes annual rental increases, the deal attracted many investors. The buyer pool generated multiple offers. Calkain has now completed six transactions with Chinese national investors.  

Sobelman says the competition drove up the sale price and considers the deal a win-win because it allowed ESI to maintain control of its mission critical operational asset while tapping into capital for a large technical and business update. The buyers Shanghai-base buyers obtained a high yield asset with total passive ownership.

“This property had numerous moving parts, being a sale-leaseback and a non-national credit tenant. Ultimately it commanded a bidding war and ended with an international buyer submitting the winning offer,” Calkain associate Teal Henderson tells GlobeSt.com. “Calkain’s platform provides the ability to work with investors from all parts of the world; including China.”