exclusively

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Savills Granite, a locally based investment banking firm, whorepresented the buyer, would not comment on the identity of theinvestment group. However, Kenneth Zakin, senior managing directorof NKF, who headed the sales team, and worked in cooperation withCitigroup Global Markets, Citigroup's investment banking division,confirms to GlobeSt.com that the buyer is Dublin-based MarklandHoldings Ltd., a company backed by Irish developers Paddy Kelly andSean Mulryan.

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[IMGCAP(2)]Of the 47 properties, which range in size from 2,000sf to 8,000 sf, 20 are in Nassau, eight are in Suffolk, three arein Queens, four are in Brooklyn, three are in the Bronx, three arein Statin Island, five are in Westchester and one is in UpperManhattan. Markland Holdings has agreed to lease the propertiesback to Citibank N.A. on a 15-year lease.

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As GlobeSt.com previously reported, there was no asking pricefor the portfolio. Initial bids were collected in early October.Zakin previously told GlobeSt.com that the buildings were offeredas a package, as individual properties, or broken up into severalsmaller portfolios.

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"Foreign investors like the attractive yields that US propertiescan achieve for them," Borja Sierra, executive managing director ofSavills Granite, tells GlobeSt.com. "In addition, Citi plans tostay in these branches for a long time so the buyer of thisportfolio will generate a steady stream of rental income withinstrong retail locations." Sierra says that the US property marketis a big draw for foreign capital and that this deal "reinforceshow offshore investors are still eying large-scale deals here."

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Zakin previously told GlobeSt.com that Citigroup was committedto long-term occupancy of the locations but did not have the needto continue to own the locations. He also explained that this wasthe second suchoffering Citigroup and NKF has brought to the market in 2007. InJune 2007, the team closed on the sale of a 23-branch, 217,000-sfCitibank portfolio, with properties centered in the New York Citymetro area.

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Zakin tells GlobeSt.com that there was a lot of interest from"those who didn't win the first time around." He says that back inJune, there was significant local interest in that package, andthis time, the portfolio attracted foreign interest. "It was sortof a mixed-bag of interest," he explains, noting that there were1031 buyers, net lease buyer, foreign buyers and many others. "Thisis part of Citibank's long-term plan to reduce their real estateholdings," he tells GlobeSt.com.

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Zakin previously told GlobeSt.com that the portfolio has "greatcredit, great locations, long-term leases and stable cash flow withannual increases. In a market that is seeing clear flight toquality, the diversification and credit nature of thesetransactions has made this a very desirable transaction," hesaid.

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Other members of the NKF sales team for the Citibank portfoliowere Neil Goldmacher, EVP; Geoffrey Rockhill, senior managingdirector; Randall Liberman, associate, and Justin DiMare,associate. Steven Moore, VP, leads the Citigroup Global Marketsteam.

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Natalie Dolce

Natalie Dolce, editor-in-chief of GlobeSt.com and GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum, is responsible for working with editorial staff, freelancers and senior management to help plan the overarching vision that encompasses GlobeSt.com, including short-term and long-term goals for the website, how content integrates through the company’s other product lines and the overall quality of content. Previously she served as national executive editor and editor of the West Coast region for GlobeSt.com and Real Estate Forum, and was responsible for coverage of news and information pertaining to that vital real estate region. Prior to moving out to the Southern California office, she was Northeast bureau chief, covering New York City for GlobeSt.com. Her background includes a stint at InStyle Magazine, and as managing editor with New York Press, an alternative weekly New York City paper. In her career, she has also covered a variety of beats for M magazine, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, FashionLedge.com, and Co-Ed magazine. Dolce has also freelanced for a number of publications, including MSNBC.com and Museums New York magazine.