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LOS ANGELES-The Barker Pacific Group has acquired eight self-storage properties totaling 500,000 sf from the Ontario-based Empire Cos. for $30 million and will operate them under Barker Pacific’s newly formed Storage Solutions brand. Los Angeles-based Barker Pacific acquired the assets, which include 4,000 units on 25 acres in three Southern California counties, through its Cerritos-based Union Development Co.

Union Development Co. will fold the 4,000-unit Empire Self Storage portfolio in Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties into the operation of its 10 existing self-storage properties, which comprise 6,000 units. The company expects to consolidate all 18 locations under the new Storage Solutions brand by the end of the year.

The acquisition of the Empire Self Storage portfolio follows a business plan that Barker Pacific had in mind when it acquired Union Development last year, according to Michael Barker, UDC chairman and managing director of Barker Pacific Group. “When we acquired the UDC last December we wanted to build on the economies of scale our internal management operations provide and grow the asset base as the right opportunities became available,” Barker says.

In the purchase of the Empire portfolio, the seller was represented by Robert Benner of Tustin-based Self Storage Brokerage Inc. Union Development Co. was represented by Christopher Rising of the Los Angeles-based Rising Real Estate Group.

Union Development Co.’s holdings includes more than 1.8 million sf of shopping centers, apartment complexes, office buildings, industrial parks and self-storage facilities. Barker Pacific Group owns the company in a venture with New York-based Angelo, Gordon & Co., an investment management firm that specializes in non-traditional assets.

Barker Pacific, established more than 20 years ago, owns a portfolio that includes a number of high-profile properties in California and Florida. Among its other Los Angeles area assets are the Fine Arts Building at 626 Wilshire Blvd. and the 5055 Wilshire Blvd. building.

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