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IRVINE, CA-American Spectrum Realty Inc. has sold eight non-core assets for $43.8 million, acquired two others and has three under contract to purchase, the company says.

The locally based firm says the transactions are part of its previously announced strategy to refocus its property portfolio to office and industrial in the southwestern US.

As part of the shift, the company has acquired two office buildings in Houston, a 59,550-sf property that was purchased in May and a 44,036-sf building that it bought in July. The three additional office buildings under contract, which are also in Houston, comprise 228,572 sf in deals that American Spectrum expects to close before the end of the year. In the deals that have already closed, the company acquired the properties via a combination of partnership units, deferred cash payments and the assumption of debt.

The eight non-core assets that have sold consist of an apartment complex in Long Beach, an office complex in Kenwood, OH; and industrial assets in Indianapolis, Tucson, AZ; Earth City, MO; Loveland, OH; and Downers Grove, IL.

William J. Carden, president of American Spectrum, says the company’s goal is to become more profitable by focusing on office and industrial properties in California, Texas and Arizona. He says the net proceeds generated by these sales have been used primarily to acquire properties and for capital expenditures related to tenant improvements and enhancements on existing properties. American Spectrum likes the “blend of growth and stability” in the local economies of Southern California, Arizona and Texas, Carden says, adding that the company is actively pursuing acquisitions in the office and industrial categories. American Spectrum owns 26 office, industrial, apartment and retail properties in California, Texas, Arizona, South Carolina and the Midwest.

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