As early as the afternoon of May 26, an offshore buyer was expected to wire a deposit for both of moribund insurance giant AIG’s towers in Lower Manhattan, according to an industry source.
The taking price for 70 Pine Street and 72 Wall Street is said to be in the ballpark of about $100 a square foot, which, as the first major Lower Manhattan building sale since early 2008, would be a paradigm-shifting number. By point of comparison, in June 2007, 60 Wall Street sold to Paramount Group for approximately $730 a square foot, or $1.18 billion dollars. In December 2007, SL Green bought 388-390 Greenwich Street for more than $600 a square foot, or $1.575 billion.
Either way, such a remarkably fast turnaround would be good news for CB Richard Ellis’ Darcy Stacom and Bill Shanahan, who are representing the seller, and for the downtown market, which hasn’t seen an investment sale of any substance in months.
It’s not yet clear who the buyer is, but here’s one possible clue to its origins: A source says that last week, both a Korean and a Chinese firm were haggling with AIG over its demand for 18 months of free rent as part of any deal.
As The Observer first reported two weeks ago, second-round bids for AIG’s two buildings at 70 Pine and 72 Wall were due on May 7.