In a penthouse-level play, real estate developer Tishman Speyer Properties and investment bank Lehman Brothers will spend $13.5 billion to buy the nation's second-largest apartment owner. The $60.75 per share offer for real estate trust Archstone-Smith, confirmed this morning, will take the company private in a deal worth over $22 billion including debt.
Blackstone's widely publicized $39 billion acquisition of Sam Zell's Equity Office Properties Trust in February sparked new interest in the REIT market, although few predicted another deal of this size, the Times reports. The acquisition gives Tishman a major foothold in the apartment sector, which continues to grow even as housing softens. Archstone-Smith owns over 86,000 apartments, most of them in major urban markets. (Read more real estate stories.)