NEW YORK CITY-Altria Group Inc. has signed an agreement to sell its headquarters building at 120 Park Ave. here for approximately $525 million. The purchaser is a subsidiary of Global Holdings Inc., a private, US-based real estate investment company, which is part of Eyal Ofer family interests.

The 643,000-sf building has served as Altria’s corporate headquarters since it opened in 1982. Under terms of the agreement, Altria plans to close the sale no later than April 1, 2008. Altria said in a prepared statement that it will record a pre-tax gain of approximately $440 million upon closing the transaction. CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. handled the sale for Altria.

Lisa Gonzalez, with Altria, tells GlobeSt.com that for the past several years, Altria has been decentralizing its operations. As a result, she explained that, as the CEO announced in a conference call Aug. 29, the current 500 employees that Altria’s corporate headquarters currently houses, will be greatly reduced. The source noted that the company plans to relocate its headquarters to Richmond, VA in early 2008 and will eliminate approximately 400 employees. Gonzalez could not provide details regarding the Richmond property.

As of Sept. 30, Altria Group, Inc. owned 100% of Philip Morris International Inc., Philip Morris USA Inc. and Philip Morris Capital Corp., and approximately 28.6% of SABMiller plc. Altria Group Inc. recorded 2006 net revenues from continuing operations of $67.1 billion.

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