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WILTON, CT-In its first deal, Luzern Realty Fund I LP, a real estate investment fund founded by former Reckson Associates Realty Corp. EVP and COO Salvatore Campofranco, purchased 372 Wilton Office Plaza here for $12.3 million. The seller was a partnership led by Leon Silverman of White Plains.

Campofranco, the founder and managing partner of Luzern Realty Fund, says his firm has moved into the 91,000-sf office building that is currently 60% leased. The deal was financed by NewStar Financial Inc. of Boston, which provided a non-recourse $14.6-million first mortgage loan.

Campofranco says that some of the financing proceeds will be used to undertake an extensive upgrade of the building. NewStar Financial says that the paper was structured with a two-year term and three one-year extensions. NewStar’s Jim Korinek, Andrea Goldman, Zibby Shiver, Jake Clapton, Don Davis and Evan Turner worked on the deal.

The property will be managed by Luzern Associates LLC, a privately held real estate investment and operating company founded and managed by Campofranco. Jeffrey Dunne, vice chairman of CB Richard Ellis, represented the seller in the transaction.

“The physical characteristics of the building have to be upgraded to be brought up to the standards of what tenants are looking for,” Campofranco tells GlobeSt.com. Among the upgrades for the building that will be simply known as “Wilton 372″ being considered include: new landscaping, a new lobby, new lighting, new architectural features on the exterior of the building as well as improved amenities such as a new fitness center and conference room and a drive up and drop off for tenants and visitors.

Luzern Associates has hired Newmark Knight Frank as the exclusive leasing agent for what will be a total of 47,000 sf on the second floor of the building that will become available upon the completion of renovations.

Newmark Knight Frank’s John Goodkind, Gilbert Ohls, Richard Rosencrans, James Ritman and Paul Gojkovich III will be working on the Wilton 372 assignment. Goodkind, managing principal with Newmark Knight Frank tells GlobeSt.com that “it’s exciting to have Sal back in the market as an owner. He knows what to do to improve the quality of office product in Westchester and Fairfield County. Wilton 372 will be the premier example of the quality product the market deserves.”

The building’s largest tenant is marketing firm Euro RSCG Direct, which occupies approximately 24,000 sf and the American Cancer Society, which has a 6,700-sf office.

Campofranco says that his fund is eyeing other deals primarily in the Northeast that involve value creation opportunities in the office, for-rent residential and mixed use arenas. When fully financed, the fund’s value target will be approximately $100 million, he adds.

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