Kushner divests equity in major NYC property

NEW YORK (IFR) - Jared Kushner has divested his equity interest in 666 Fifth Avenue, a 39-story office and retail building on Manhattan’s famed shopping area, according to a spokesperson at Kushner Companies.

Jared Kushner, senior advisor to President-elect Donald Trump arrives for the Presidential Inauguration of Trump at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., January 20, 2017. REUTERS/Saul Loeb/Pool

Kushner said he would step down as CEO of Kushner Companies, a family owned real estate company, and begin to divest himself of substantial assets after he was made a senior White House advisor to US President Donald Trump, his father-in-law.

“Mr. Kushner divested his equity interest in 666 Fifth Avenue, and has no role in the management or operations of the property,” a Kushner Companies spokesperson said in an emailed statement to IFR.

“Mr. Kushner’s ownership interests were sold using a third-party appraisal for fair market value to a family trust, of which he is not a beneficiary,” the spokesperson said.

Neither Ivanka Trump nor her and Kushner’s children are beneficiaries to the family trust, the spokesperson also confirmed.

When asked by IFR, Kushner Companies declined to give any detail about the sale price of the equity stake and declined to discuss any aspect of the outstanding debt on the property.

Kushner bought the property for US$1.8bn in 2007 - the highest price ever paid for a single office building sale in the United States at the time, according to Kroll Bond Rating Agency - but it was last valued well below that level.

The last appraisal, completed in 2011 as part of a debt restructuring, valued the building at just US$820m. Kroll, which said the building was 20% vacant as of July 2016, valued the property at US$982.1m.

Kushner and his partners in 666 Fifth took out US$1.2bn of senior debt to buy the property, which was later packaged and sold into three CMBS deals.

It is not clear what the divestiture means for the debt on the property.

The senior debt was restructured in 2011 and extended to February 2019. As part of the restructuring, Kushner brought in Vornado Realty as a partner.

A call and email to Vornado was not immediately returned.