D of the 2Ye 0ea 0al 7rs
Despite all the talk of deal volume slowing down in the latter half of 2007, the year turned out
to be a good one for development, leasing, merger and acquisition, and yes, even sales and
finance transactions. In fact, activity was so robust that choosing the top deals of the year
was quite a difficult task.
Development was in full swing, with several large projects across the nation breaking ground or delivering.
Among them are a 1.1-million-sf speculative office tower in Manhattan and a hotel and residential complex that
promises to change the face of Downtown Los Angeles. Tenants also revisited their space needs, resulting in a
number of large office, industrial and retail deals being signed. Expansion and consolidation were the drivers
behind many of the office deals, including Westinghouse Electric Co.’s new headquarters in Pennsylvania. Also,
several users of industrial space moved into modern, more efficient regional warehouse and distribution cen-
ters, as was the case with Whirlpool, which leased a 1.7-million-sf facility in Southern California. Despite the
slowdown in the capital markets, investors were still able to close large property acquisitions, many of which
involved portfolios, and lenders shelled out some big financing packages as well. However, the impact of the
credit crunch was evident, as most of the sales and financing transactions took place in the first half. And, of
course, 2007 was another major year for mergers, with some of the largest privatizations in recent history tak-
ing place, such as Blackstone’s buyout of Equity Office Properties and Hilton Hotels.
After sorting through hundreds of qualifying submissions, the editors of REAL ESTATE FORUM narrowed the
field down to the top 10 transactions that closed in 2007. The two most significant deals—chosen not only for their
size and complexity but also for their impact on the market and industry as a whole—in each category are profiled,
as are the dealmakers that participated in them. The remaining eight are spotlighted as well, in no particular order.
Information about the following transactions came from the firms involved in the deals, FORUM and
GlobeSt.com archives as well as other industry sources.
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34 REALESTATEFORUM MARCH 2008