Nanuet-Based Birch Group Continues Expansion With Purchase of New Jersey Office Buildings

Real Estate In-Depth | December 9, 2020

500 International Drive, Mount Olive, NJ

MOUNT OLIVE, NJ—After acquiring a Mack-Cali office building in New Jersey in late November, Nanuet-based The Birch Group has acquired two office buildings in Mount Olive, NJ that were originally developed by The Rockefeller Group.

Birch Group’s latest purchase was announced by brokerage firm JLL, which marketed the properties on behalf of a private seller. The firm acquired 500 International Drive, a 73,000-square-foot office building, and 150 Clark Drive, an adjacent 7,115-square-foot commercial building. No financial terms of the transaction were disclosed.

500 International Drive, developed in 1987 by The Rockefeller Group, is a three-story, recently renovated office building that is fully leased to 16 tenants in various industries. The asset offers a unique layout that provides tenant flexibility and efficiency, a top floor balcony, bathrooms with showers and a two-story atrium lobby.

Positioned on 8.06 acres, 500 International Drive is part of a larger development known as The International Trade Center, a 684-acre business/commerce center in Western Morris County. This area is designated as a Foreign Trade Zone, which offers companies tax incentives on merchandise imported for manufacturing or assembling when the final product is exported outside of the U.S. Additionally, this location is approximately 30 miles east of Pennsylvania and 40 miles west of New York City with superior connectivity to both areas via the Interstate 80 and Route 206 interchange as well as the Mt. Olive train station.

The JLL Capital Markets team representing the seller included Senior Managing Directors Kevin O’Hearn and Jose Cruz, Senior Vice President Fred Hyatt, Senior Directors Steve Simonelli and Michael Oliver and Associate Nicholas Stefans.

“This sale reflects the continued strong interest for high quality, well-leased suburban office product, even during this challenging pandemic,” stated JLL’s O’Hearn. “And this is our second sale in two months to The Birch Group who performed exceptionally well and remain one of the most active investors in this market.”

Mark Meisner of the Birch Group added, “The Birch Group was attracted to this property due to its location in the Foreign Trade Zone and its location in a very tight submarket.”

The Birch Group has been very active of late in the New Jersey office market. In late November, The Birch Group of Nanuet acquired from Mack-Cali Realty Corp., a 154,820-square-foot office building at 7 Campus Drive here for $12.75 million.

The sale by Jersey-based Mack-Cali is part of an ongoing disposition of its office assets. The firm reported that the sale brings its year-to-date suburban office dispositions to $270.35 million.

Recently, the Birch Group has closed on several other New Jersey acquisitions. Last month, Globest.com reported that The Birch Group had purchased the 269,720-square-foot, class A, office property at 55 Challenger Road in Ridgefield Park, NJ. The Birch Group and joint venture partner Vision Properties also acquired last month the 228,000-square-foot, class A office building at 180 Park Ave. in Florham Park, NJ.

In January 2020, the Birch Group purchased two Parsippany office buildings totaling more than 191,000 square feet. The firm added the 99 and 119 Cherry Hill Road office buildings to its portfolio.