NEW YORK CITY-PaineWebber has filed a registration form with the SEC for plans to merge with the United Bank of Switzerland. Stockholders will vote on approval next week, Oct. 23. One employee at PaineWebber’s real estate investment group tells he believes it will mean lay-offs and the selling of leases.

PaineWebber’s headquarters is located at 1285 Ave. of the Americas, where it leases approximately 669,000 sf through Dec. 31, 2015. Other office and retail leases in Manhattan include space in the 140 Broadway, 1251 Ave. of the Americas, 590 Madison Ave. and 200 Park Ave. Within New York State alone the company holds space from Albany to East Hampton, Long Island. Its leases throughout the world expire between the end of this year and 2015.

Our PaineWebber source points to rumors that Cushman & Wakefield is brokering the deal. Calls to C&W were not returned by press time. According to a report from PaineWebber, announcing financial advisor Goldman, Sachs & Co.’s stamp of approval on the deal, “The board of directors also considered the agreement of PaineWebber and UBS that PaineWebber will offer to enter into a retention program with its employees, particularly financial advisors, for retention payments in an aggregate amount estimated at $875 million.”

While PaineWebber hopes to have UBS retain employees, how far that will extend remains to be seen. The retention of any leases does not seem to have been addressed specifically. As the story evolves, will bring news of the latest developments.

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