| NEW YORK
NEW YORK Dec 10 First-round bids for Sony
Corp's U.S. headquarters were due on Monday, in one of
the most watched sales of a Manhattan office building this year.
The 37-story, 800,000 square-foot Sony Tower is expected to
fetch between $800 to $1,000 a square foot, according to two
real estate sources, who asked not be named because the bidding
process is ongoing.
Sony is expected to move out of the building over the next
three years, leaving the new owner to find tenants.
The tower at Madison Avenue between 55th and 56th streets
was built as the headquarters of what was then the world's
biggest corporation, telephone company AT&T Corp. The
building was completed in 1984.
Sony bought the building in 1992. Twenty years later, the
Japanese company's market value has declined and last month
ratings agency Fitch its debt to "junk" status, which could push
up its borrowing costs and make asset sales more attractive.
In an email on Monday, Sony declined to comment on the
building's sale. A source said three weeks ago that Sony wanted
the building sold before it reports its financial results in