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Bank of America to sell some office space

The bank has so far identified three office buildings it will sell, in N.Y. and N.C. It also has substantial real estate holdings in Southern California.

February 04, 2012|By Roger Vincent, Los Angeles Times
  • Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte, N.C. The bank said its plan to shed some of its real estate holdings would not affect employees.
Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte, N.C. The bank said its plan to… (Chuck Burton, Associated )

In a move to shed nonessential assets, Bank of America will sell and lease back some of its administrative office space.

Only three office buildings — two in North Carolina and one in New York — have been identified for sale so far, but others are expected to follow.

"Real estate ownership is not a core business for Bank of America," spokeswoman Kelli Raulerson said. "Therefore we are currently reviewing our administrative portfolio and may make the decision to sell our ownership interest in certain properties."

The Charlotte, N.C.-based bank has substantial real estate holdings in Southern California. Real estate data provider CoStar Group shows that in Los Angeles County alone the bank owns scores of properties, many of them Bank of America branches.

The company also owns hundreds of thousands of square feet of office space in Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks and Westlake Village acquired in the 2008 purchase of Countrywide Financial. Bank of America Home Loans, a division of the bank, is based in Calabasas in a building once owned by Countrywide.

The former Countrywide space is not being considered for sale, Raulerson said. The bank also has no plans to sell its Charlotte headquarters or its primary offices in New York.

Bank workers will not be relocated as a result of administrative office building sales, she said.

"We will continue to lease space in these properties and there will be no impact to employees," she said.

The buildings identified for sale so far are Hearst Tower and Fifth Third Center in Charlotte and 222 Broadway in New York.

roger.vincent@latimes.com

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