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NEW YORK CITY-The Statuto Group has purchased 960 Avenue of the Americas for $105 million. New York Community Bancorp Inc. sold the 130,300-sf building to the Italian company, which was advised by DTZ Real Estate Investors.

Built in 1928 and renovated in 2001, 960 Avenue of the Americas is the headquarters building for the Atlantic Bank on New York, but the company plans to move from the building in the next year. When Atlantic Bank vacates the Garment District property, DTZ and Statuto will work to reposition the asset.

New York Community Bancorp acquired the property in April 2006 when the firm bought Atlantic Bank. When the deal closes in the next 30 days, the seller is expected to record a $65-million pre-tax gain from the asset. Company officials say the earning will be part of its Q3 figures.”This property occupies a highly prominent location in Herald Square and is close to all the main transportation centers,” says Colin Thomasson, managing director and group head of DTZ. “We are confident that the space will be attractive to a host of potential retail and office occupiers and we expect strong interest in the building when leasing commences.”

The acquisition of 960 Avenue of the Americas is Statuto’s first major acquisition in the country. The firm is looking to expand in the marketplace, according to Thomasson. “Statuto wishes to increase its ownership position in the New York City market, and we continue to seek additional real estate investment opportunities on their behalf.”

CB Richard Ellis brokers represented New York Community Bancorp.

As GlobeSt.com exclusively reported, at the beginning of May, 989 Avenue of the Americas sold to Isaac Chetrit for $49 million. The 91,050-sf, 21-story building, which is about a block away from Statuto’s purchase, was owned and managed by Himmel and Meringoff Properties.

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