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Regions Center in Little Rock hits the market

by Noel Oman | October 14, 2021 at 2:03 a.m.

The Regions Center is officially on the market after bankruptcy forced its previous owners to turn over the keys.

Jones Lang LaSalle, the global real estate services firm marketing the property, calls the 30-story building at the corner of Broadway and West Capitol Avenue in Little Rock "one of the most iconic office buildings in the state."

Known as the Regions Center and totaling 556,975 square feet, the building has stood at the prominent downtown corner since 1975. It was the tallest building in Arkansas -- at 454 feet -- until what is now called the Simmons Tower opened across Capitol Avenue in 1986. That structure is 547 feet tall.

Regions Bank sold its property in 2006 to NNN 400 Capital through a group of more than two dozen limited liability companies with similar names.

Beginning in 2016, the trustee for the investors holding the loan, Wells Fargo Bank, filed a foreclosure lawsuit in Pulaski County Circuit Court, saying the owners had defaulted on the loan and owed nearly $30 million.

The owners filed for bankruptcy in 2016 and 2017 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. They filed under Chapter 11, which would let them reorganize their debt in a way that would allow them to pay it off. The lenders eventually persuaded a judge to convert the bankruptcy to Chapter 7, which would allow the Regions Center to be sold to help satisfy the debt, a development first reported by Arkansas Business.

Jones Lang LaSalle in its online marketing documents notes that the "seller is the bankruptcy estate of NNN 400 Capitol Center 16 LLC, et als., Case No. 16-12728 (JTD) (Bankr. D. Del)."

The marketing documents place no price tag on the building, saying only that prospective buyers must contact Jones Lang LaSalle for "pricing." The Pulaski County assessor appraises the property at $30 million.

The former owners had alleged in bankruptcy court that the company managing the Regions Center failed to inform them of a bonafide $46.5 million offer to purchase the building and that a major tenant lease was about to expire, which left the group unable to pay off its loan.

Jones Lang LaSalle said it believes that the building is well-positioned to thrive, given the "robust economic fundamentals and multiple corporate users headquartered in Little Rock." Given all that, Regions Center is "one of the most exciting value-add opportunities in the Southeast," according to the marketing material.

"As the former regional headquarters for Regions Bank, the property possesses corporate headquarter building attributes and affords a prospective buyer the opportunity to reposition the asset at well below replacement costs and competitively lease an already established landmark building," the documents said.

The documents also said the building has a 57% occupancy level. Tenants pay a collective $5 million in rent per month, according to the bankruptcy trustee's latest monthly financial report.

Property tours can be arranged through Tiffany Herring, a property manager for Newmark Moses Tucker Partners.

Print Headline: Regions Center hits the market

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