AUSTIN, TX-Famed bicyclist Lance Armstrong has added commercial real estate to his other business ventures, joining forces with agent Bill Stapleton, business manager Bart Knaggs and former Trammell Crow executive Lance Sallis to form CSE Realty Partners. The real estate investment company is targeting value-add investments, while raising $100 million for a fund to further leverage what the partners are already putting into the business.

“We’re focused on acquisitions, specifically acquisitions of office, industrial, retail, multifamily and condo, and we’re initially focused on central Texas,” says Sallis, who is managing partner with the new venture. The investments will range from $5 million to $20 million and “the plan is acquisition and lease-up,” Sallis tells He says the company plans a hold target of between three and five years.

Sallis, a 20-year real estate veteran, was previously managing director with Trammell Crow Co.’s Austin office, continuing to oversee operations there after TCC’s merger with CB Richard Ellis in 2007. He left the company in March, took a few months off, then worked with the others to start CSE Realty Partners. Patrick Jeffers, another alum from TCC’s Austin office and former wide receiver with the Denver Broncos, will also be part of the team.

Sallis says he and Stapleton are old friends and Stapleton, along with Armstrong, had been discussing the possibility of a real estate investment firm for about a year. “Now’s the right time,” Sallis explains. “There’s been a re-pricing of institutional quality commercial real estate assets, and all of this creates a huge buying opportunity for groups willing to buy, hold and reposition properties.”

Armstrong is best known for his prowess on the Tour de France, a competition he won seven times. He’s also known for having battled stage three testicular cancer. He is also a businessman, having stakes in businesses including Capital Sports & Entertainment Holdings Inc.–which handles Armostrong’s cycling career, marketing and endorsements; C3 Presents–the producer of Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits Festival; and providing equity funding for bicycle component maker SRAM. Sallis says CSE Realty Partners’ office is at 98 San Jacinto, the same location as Armstrong’s other ventures.

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