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SEATTLE-Craig Wrench and Ric Anderson have left their positions as president and senior vice president at Seattle-based Lowe Enterprises to start their own real estate investment and management company–and Lowe’s entire Seattle staff is joining them.

Better yet, they won’t really have to leave and they’ve already got a decent workload. Doing business as Washington Holdings, Wrench and Anderson say they recently reached agreement to acquire Lowe’s role at five Seattle-area properties, and will be assuming Lowe’s office space in Downtown Seattle.

Wrench says the move was a difficult decision to make, but is nonetheless “a great opportunity for our team to better control our destiny, as well as pursue a slightly different investment approach.” Anderson describes the new company’s focus as acquiring a balanced portfolio of stabilized investments, as well as more “tactical” or “value-added’ projects.” “Current disequilibrium in the market should present some interesting opportunities for careful real estate investors,” he says.

Washington Holdings will manage One and Two Union Square, two Downtown buildings that contain a combined 1.8 million sf of class A office space. Elsewhere, the company will manage Southcenter Corporate Square, a 220,000 square foot office project that Wrench and Anderson acquired in 1997 while at Lowe. Other projects instantly under the new company’s belt include 1551 Eastlake Avenue and 1616 Eastlake Avenue, two office properties in the Eastlake neighborhood. The 1616 Eastlake Avenue project is currently under construction.

Wrench and Anderson are President/CEO and Executive Vice President/COO of the new company. They are joined as founding members by former Lowe execs Mark Barbieri, Mike Brooks, Brent Lower and Tim Davis. When available, more information will be added to this story.

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