The deal is the largest portfolio sale of Chicago-area realestate assets to hit the market during this economic cycle,according to Jon Winick, president of Clark Street Capital. Roughly95% of the assets are located in the Chicagoland area, with theremainder located in Central Illinois and Western Michigan, Winicktells GlobeSt.com. The exact properties cannot be disclosed at thispoint in the sale process.

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On Wednesday, Clark Street Capital sent a memo to investorsregarding the sale, which is expected to close by the middle ofFebruary. Winick says a number of companies have already expressedinterest.

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"We have already received dozens of confidentiality agreementssigned without much information yet on the portfolio," he tellsGlobeSt.com. "With the diversity of the pools, we expect a broadspectrum of buyers, ranging from the largest money-center banks tothe mid-size debt funds and the local fee-simple real estate buyerswho are now looking at debt."

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Winick believes other deals like this one, will be in the makingduring 2010. "For about a year, the sales of real estate debt andreal property grinded to a halt, as buyers and sellers stoppedtrading. After sitting on the sidelines, there is pent up demandfor transactions," Winick says.

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"Buyers are recognizing that the rock-bottom fire sale prices ofthe Winter of '09 are behind us and Sellers are becoming morerealistic about the value of their assets. In order for lending toimprove in the banking industry, banks must begin to put theirproblem assets behind."

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