November 4, 2019 – Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp. has added Vernon Hills Shopping Center in Eastchester to its diversified portfolio in an acquisition orchestrated by Cushman & Wakefield. The New York City-based, private real estate investment firm purchased the five-building Westchester County asset at a cost exceeding $125 million from Vernon Hills Shopping Center LLC.
The market-leading, mixed-use property, totaling more than 380,000 square feet and located just five miles from the White Plains CBD at 700 White Plains Road, features a mix of retail, medical and professional credit tenants serving a densely populated trade area. More than 450,000 people live within five miles of Vernon Hills Shopping Center; the average household income within that same radius is nearly $144,000. The property’s notable retailers include Starbucks, New York Sports Club, Barnes & Noble, Gap, American Eagle, Brooks Brothers, and West Elm, among others. Its medical presence is expanding significantly due to high demand in the local market, with major tenants including Lawrence Hospital along with its affiliated NY Presbyterian and Columbia Medical practices.
“Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp. had been eying this investment property – with its irreplaceable location and remarkable tenant demand – for more than 15 years, noted Cushman & Wakefield’s Andrew Merin. “This was a family-owned and operated asset since it was originally developed in the 1950s, and as such it can be considered a once in a lifetime acquisition.”
Cushman & Wakefield’s East Rutherford, N.J.-based capital markets team represented the seller and procured the buyer in the Vernon Hills Shopping Center trade, with Merin, David Bernhaut, Gary Gabriel, Brian Whitmer, Frank DiTommaso and Kyle Schmidt leading the assignment with Matt Lisk and Al Mirin of the commercial real estate services firm’s Stamford, Conn., office. Additionally, John Alascio, Gideon Gil, Sridhar Vankayala, TJ Sullivan and Maya Steinberger of Cushman & Wakefield’s Manhattan-based Equity, Debt & Structured Finance (EDSF) team represented Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp in arranging acquisition financing. The loan was provided by Peoples United Bank, as lead lender, with Amerant Bank, Iberia Bank and Westchester Bank as lending participants.
“The asset is a flagship mixed-use center in one of the most affluent townships outside New York City,” Alascio said. “Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp.’s sponsorship and business plan resonated with the banking community. In turn, active bidding from the debt markets resulted in long-term balance sheet execution.”
“Vernon Hills Shopping Center is a welcomed addition to Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp’s portfolio,” said President Daniel Levy. The firm invests in retail, hotel, and office assets and maintains a growing portfolio of more than 100 buildings valued at $14 billion. “We have watched Vernon Hills Shopping Center thrive for years under the stewardship of the seller and his family, who built the Vernon Hills Shopping Center,” he said. “Now our family-owned organization will aspire to continue this track record. We are proud to incorporate this outstanding property among our most iconic holdings.”
Ashkenazy Acquisition has a superior performance history in purchasing and managing premier assets. Led by seasoned, in-house acquisitions, finance, construction, leasing, development and marketing professionals, its integrated team offers expertise at all levels of property transaction and subsequent management.
Cushman & Wakefield’s New Jersey capital markets team specializes exclusively in office, industrial, multifamily, land and retail property trades throughout New Jersey, New York, and Fairfield County, Conn. The group has completed $32 billion worth of transactions since 2000, closing over $3.3 billion in sales in 2018.