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STAMFORD, CT-A newly formed joint venture of GE Commercial Finance and Health Care Property Investors Inc. of Newport Beach, CA, plans to invest $600 million to acquire medical office properties across the nation.

The two firms announced the HCP Medical Office Portfolio LLC joint venture partnership earlier this week. Officials with GE Commercial Finance, which is based in Stamford, CT and Health Care Property Investors say the joint venture was created in response to hospitals and health care systems’ redeployment of capital from non-core assets.

“We saw an opportunity to expand our offerings in the growing health care arena,” says Mike Neal, president and CEO of GE Commercial Finance. “Health Care Property Investors’ expertise complements our deep capabilities in health care and commercial real estate. The combination of the nation’s top health care REIT and our comprehensive financing abilities will be a strong one.”

A GE Real Estate spokesman says that an executive committee for the new joint venture partnership will be established. The joint venture will report to GE Real Estate North American Equity Group, headed by Joseph Parsons. The executive committee will consist of two representatives from GE Commercial Finance, two from GE Real Estate and two from Health Care Property Investors.

Commenting on its partnership with GE, Jay Flaherty, CEO of Health Care Property Investors, notes, “Our joint venture with GE and the formation of HCP Medical Office Portfolio LLC is an important part of our commitment to execute opportunistic, long-term growth strategies in health care real estate by allowing us better access to the dynamic medical office building market.”

GE Commercial Finance has assets of approximately $200 billion. Health Care Property Investors, as of March 31, 2003, had a portfolio of 453 properties in 44 states. The equity REIT’s holdings include: 31 hospitals, 176 long-term care facilities, 126 retirement and assisted-living facilities, 85 medical office buildings and 35 other health care related facilities.

On the same day the firm reported its joint venture with GE Commercial Finance, Health Care Property Investors also announced that Richard M. Rosenberg, retired chairman and CEO of BankAmerica Corp., had been elected to its Board of Directors.

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