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Wells Fargo Closes $700MM Loan Supported by Properties in Hawaii, Texas and Maryland

October 29, 2018, 07:05 AM
Filed Under: Real Estate

Wells Fargo & Company announced it has closed a $700 million syndicated loan facility to The Howard Hughes Corporation® (HHC), a publicly traded company that owns, manages and develops commercial, residential and mixed-use real estate throughout the United States, including a portfolio of acclaimed master planned communities.

“This financing achieves several objectives, including converting bridge and construction loans to a five-year term loan facility that provides operating flexibility and enhanced liquidity for The Howard Hughes Corporation, and Wells Fargo was pleased to agent and partner with HHC for the financing,” said Bill Vernon, head of Real Estate Banking in Wells Fargo’s Commercial Real Estate group. “HHC is a valued client, and we look forward to continuing to provide flexible capital solutions that meet the company’s financing objectives for its existing portfolio and future acquisition and development pipeline.”

The loan facility comprises a $615 million term loan and an $85 million revolver that will provide general working capital for HHC. The loan facility is secured by a diverse collateral pool comprised of 26 retail, office and hotel properties located in HHC’s acclaimed master planned communities of Ward Village®, The Woodlands®, and Downtown Columbia®.

Ward Village® is a 60-acre coastal master planned community in the heart of Honolulu, recognized as the "Best-Planned Community in the United States" by Architectural Digest, and most recently as the "Master Planned Community of the Year" by the National Association of Home Builders. Upon completion it will introduce approximately one million square feet of retail experiences; it is currently home to 90 unique stores and 40 restaurants.

The Woodlands® is a 28,000-acre award-winning master planned community located 27 miles north of downtown Houston. Highlights include 1725 and 1735 Hughes Landing®, two Class A office towers with a structured parking garage, located within the 66-acre, mixed-use Hughes Landing development, one of Houston’s premier mixed-use urban centers.

Downtown Columbia® is located at the center of Columbia, MD, one of the first master planned communities in the U.S. founded by legendary developer James W. Rouse in 1967. At full buildout, the redevelopment of Downtown Columbia will feature more than 14 million square feet of office, hotel, retail, as well as residential, cultural, and public space. Highlights include Columbia Corporate Center and One Merriweather®, nine Class A and Class B office buildings.

“This new facility achieves our stated financial goals of both increasing our financial flexibility as well as reducing our weighted average cost of capital. By reducing our cost of funding, extending our maturity and adding a revolving component, this financing exemplifies our commitment to further improving our credit metrics,” said David R. O’Reilly, Chief Financial Officer of HHC. “Further, we are thrilled with the strong support that our lenders have shown to execute on this transaction.”

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