(Corrects offer price to $1.4 billion from $14 billion in paragraph 5)
Sept 17 (Reuters) - The family that controls the Empire State Building could kick off a formal marketing process to sell it as early as this week by offering shares in a real estate investment trust (REIT), the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The building and its investors are managed by Malkin Holdings, which is spearheading the initial public offering and hopes to price the offering as early as the first week of October through lead underwriters Bank of America Corp and Goldman Sachs Group Inc, the newspaper reported.
The building, the world's tallest from its completion in 1931 until 1972, is to be rolled out as a REIT, called Empire State Realty Trust Inc, and is expected to raise about $1 billion in proceeds from an IPO.
The Malkin family is hoping to sell the trust at a yield of 5 percent to 5.5 percent, according to the report, which cited one person who discussed the offering with the family. (link.reuters.com/gut23v)
Sources familiar with the matter told Reuters earlier this month that one of New York City's biggest landlords, Thor Equities LLC, had raised its offer to buy the Empire State Building to $1.4 billion in cash, hoping to trump the plan to roll the landmark property into a trust.
The sale would be an alternative to the REIT, which already has the approval of nearly all the investors in the building.
The Empire State Building is a major tourist attraction, known for its Art Deco tower and light display at night.
The Malkin family has a 15.43 percent stake in Empire State Building Associates and a 6.7 percent stake in Empire State Building Co. (Reporting By Neha Dimri and Zeba Siddiqui in Bangalore)