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LOS ANGELES-The on-again, off-again effort of Rob Maguire to sell Maguire Properties took another turn this morning when Maguire, who serves as chairman and CEO of the company, launched an effort to buy 75% of the office REIT by selling all of its properties except its Orange County holdings. Maguire “has ascribed a nominal value of $21 per share” to the offer, according to a statement by the REIT this morning. Shares of the company closed at just over $17 Friday, and recent public filings list the number of outstanding shares at approximately 42 million.

Maguire’s proposal comes almost a month to the day after a special committee that was looking for a buyer said that it had discontinued its search because there were no buyers in sight. The REIT formed the special committee in December after a major stockholder pressured Maguire to boost shareholder value through a sale or other actions, but Maguire has long been rumored to be looking for a buyer for his company.

Maguire’s proposal consists of an approximately $18.18 per share special cash distribution by the company, plus a cash tender of $2.82 per share for approximately 75% of the outstanding common stock, to be funded principally by the sale of assets. Maguire shareholders would retain what the firm calls a “stub interest” in the REIT, and the agreement would require approval by owners of two thirds of the company’s outstanding stock.

The special committee says that it considers Maguire’s proposal to be only an “expression of interest” that the committee cannot act upon yet because so many questions remain about whether the deal can actually be consummated. The questions surrounding the deal “make the expression of interest not currently actionable for consideration by the special committee,” it says. The committee “intends to permit Mr. Maguire and the parties working with him to pursue the effort of firming up the expression of interest to a point which would justify assigning significant internal and external resources to engage with Mr. Maguire regarding his expression of interest,” the REIT’s statement this morning says.

Maguire’s offer comes a few days after the REIT refinanced one of its Orange County properties, Griffin Towers, in a $200 million deal. The REIT repaid an existing $200 million mortgage loan that was scheduled to mature on May 1, funding it through the issuance of $180 million in new debt and $20 million of cash on hand. Griffin Towers features two 14-story towers totaling 540,000 sf at the intersection of the 405 and 55 freeways in the South Coast Metro submarket.

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