Brandywine Realty Trust, one of the Philadelphia area's biggest landlords, has sold majority ownership in 29 Montgomery County and Allentown office buildings to DRA Advisors L.L.C., New York, as it diversifies beyond Philadelphia and prepares new projects, like Cira II in University City.
Brandywine, of Radnor, disclosed plans for the sale last month, and announced it signed the deal this morning.
DRA, whose local holdings formerly included Suburban Square in Ardmore and the Eight Penn Center office tower, paid $245.4 million for an 80 percent stake in the Brandywine properties, which total 1.6 million square feet, and are more than 95 percent occupied, according to Brandywine.
Overall, Brandywine owns more than 30 million square feet of office space and manages a total of more than 44 million square feet, in California, Virginia, Texas and other states as well as the Philadelphia area.
Brandywine retains a 20 percent stake in the properties involved in the DRA deal, and will continue to manage them, according to a statement from chief executive officer Gerard Sweeney.
The deal includes buildings on Dresher Road, Welsh road, and Business Center Drive in Horsham, in the Springhouse Corporate Center in Fort Washington, at Greenwood Square in Bensalem, and on Tilghman Street, Windsor Drive, and Snowdrift Road in Allentown.
Two Horsham buildings vacated by previous tenants were excluded from the sale, and an Allentown warehouse has been sold separately, said Robert Fahey, executive vice president of CB Richard Ellis, which marketed the properties for Brandywine.
"Three years ago, most of [Brandywine's] portfolio was within two hours of here. They've really spread out," Fahey said. "They're trying to spread their financial resources out further, diversify their portfolio, and make their stock more appealing."
He added, regarding DRA, "It's a good sign for the phila region someone was willing to invest $250 million in a package of office buildings in a somewhat uncertain capital environment. It speaks well of Philadelphia and of Brandywine as a partner."
Brandywine shares rose 20 cents, or 1 percent, to $18.47 in early trading on the New York Stock Exchange following the announcement.