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California and the West

Developer Meruelo Files for Public Stock Offering

September 21, 2006|Jeffrey L. Rabin | Times Staff Writer

Los Angeles developer Richard Meruelo is seeking to raise as much as $500 million by taking his real estate firm public.

Meruelo Maddux Properties Inc. registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission late Tuesday for a stock offering. The firm said going public would help it fund development of its extensive commercial and residential real estate holdings.

Meruelo is the largest land owner in downtown Los Angeles, controlling more than 100 parcels in the central city alone.

His holdings include properties in the South Park area near Staples Center, around the former Transamerica Center, now SBC Tower, and in the garment, produce and industrial areas east of downtown's high-rises.

Meruelo's acquisition of key properties has been financed in part by loans from the California Public Employees' Retirement System. The bulk of the proceeds from a stock sale would be used to pay off debt, the firm said.

It didn't estimate the number of shares it wanted to sell or give a price range. Brokerage Friedman Billings Ramsey & Co. was listed as the underwriter.


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