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MESA, AZ-Patience has paid off for the Newport Beach, CA-based Koll Co., which has ended a two-year search to mark its first spot in the metro. Koll, teaming with the Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho, has spent $11.3 million for the 94,611-sf Superstition Springs Commerce Center.

The joint venture acquired the three-building, 78%-occupied business park from International Capital Partners of Scottsdale in an off-market transaction. Although Koll has been interested in the Phoenix area market for awhile, the right property wasn’t available. Alan Airth, Koll’s managing principal, tells GlobeSt.com that Superstition Springs Commerce Center at 7143 E. Southern Ave. fulfilled the criteria–small tenant suites and some vacancy for upside. “The project was recently built and that was also attractive to us,” he says.

Airth says the immediate focus will be on leasing efforts to retain tenants and obtain new ones. He says there will be some minor tenant improvements in the five-year-old complex. A local team with Trammell Crow Co. will lease and manage the business park.The Superstition Springs Commerce Center acquisition closely trailed the JV’s definitive agreement to spend $273 million to buy a portfolio of 12 office properties in Arizona, Colorado and Texas from Denver-based AmeriVest Properties.

Airth says the Koll-pension fund partnership has an additional $200 million in equity for future purchases. But, he adds, there’s nothing else under contract in the metro. He says the shopping list calls for small tenant properties, office or industrial, that are value adds in good locations. “We acquire them then we reposition them and upgrade them to maximize the value of the asset,” he says, adding Koll wants properties in western metropolitan areas with strong prospects for continued growth.

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