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DALLAS-Staying a course to spend $100 million by year’s end in key markets, BH Properties LLC has deposited the first round of a $40-million Texas allocation into a $17-million trio of buys. And, it’s holding purchase contracts for another 800,000 sf of industrial and retail space in the state.

“We’re very aggressive. We’re deal hungry,” Steve Jaffe, BH Properties’ executive vice president and general counsel, tells GlobeSt.com. “We’ve identified Texas as a key market for us.” The Los Angeles-based group is deploying capital from US investors into value-add deals in the $2-million to $25-million range.

The just-bought Texas properties are a 375,000-sf, class A warehouse at 1401 Pullman Dr. in the Vista del Sol Industrial Park in El Paso; 209,000-sf industrial asset at 2801 Galveston Ave. in McAllen; and 55,552-sf former Kmart building at 5222 Wesley St. in Greenville. Jaffe says the spending spree also extends into Arizona, the Carolinas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Utah, but it’s taking a bye on California buys for now.

Scott Henry, BH Properties’ North Texas-based regional acquisitions director, says the El Paso property is 67% leased and the other two are vacant. “We feel good about the markets,” he says. “The upside is the vacancy. We’re really willing to take the leasing risk.”

The Greenville building, positioned on 6.2 acres, was bought from a local seller, Greentex Properties LLC, which was represented by Terry Driggers of Century 21′s Patterson Agency. Henry says it will be retooled and multi-tenanted.

The El Paso Property, sitting on 24.32 acres, is a four-tenant building that, like the others, had done a run on the market. Seller of record El Paso SD Ltd. had the asset listed locally through Adin Brown of Sonny Brown Associates.

As for the McAllen piece, it’s a strong likelihood that the 11.4-acre holding will change from industrial to retail before BH Properties closes out the hold, according to Jaffe. The property is across the street from the Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group’s proposed 600,000-sf regional mall and beside the city’s convention center. “Right now, we’d be jumping the market,” he says about the land’s future direction, “but that’s the end game.”

Wayne Troxler of Guilford Realty Group and David Allex of Allex & Associates represented the McAllen seller, VF Jenswear LP, which will vacate the building by month’s end. Last year, BH Properties bought VF Jenswear’s 112,000-sf building in El Paso, which it still occupies.

The triple play boosts the Texas portfolio to 1.5 million sf. The value-add buyer’s niche is “a willingness to buy that stuff that we know will take a little bit of time to generate money,” Jaffe explains, adding the group isn’t opposed to investing as much as two years into the wait. “We reposition assets. We’re investing heavily in the Texas market. And, we’ve got more money to spend.”

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