American Realty to Close on CapLease Acquisition Early

Net-lease property REIT American Realty Capital Properties  (NASDAQ: ARCP  ) says that with Capital Lease Funding (NYSE: LSE  ) announcing the expiration of its 40-day "go shop" period and no other buyers being found, it plans to buy its rival sooner than originally intended.

American Realty announced in May its intention to buy the rival REIT for $2.2 billion, including $580 million in assumed debt that it will repay, which it said would make it the third-largest net-lease property REIT in the U.S. based on market capitalization.

CapLease had a 40-day window of opportunity to find another buyer, called the "go-shop" period, and it said it approached 44 potential bidders, and no bids were submitted. As a result, CapLease will submit the acquisition by American Realty to its shareholders and has filed with the SEC a preliminary proxy statement to that effect.

Stating that 2013 has been a "transformative" year for the REIT and that it intends to close on the purchase of CapLease as soon as possible in the third quarter, American Realty Capital Partners Chairman and CEO Nicholas S. Schorsch said in a statement, "With the recent success demonstrated by our $774 million acquisition of a high-quality portfolio from GE Capital, we have closed over $1.14 billion of portfolio acquisitions year to date."

Once the deal is consummated, American Capital expects to have an enterprise value in excess of $10 billion by the end of 2013.

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