A day after announcing it had sold its Fairfax, Va., Pender Business Park property for $31.5 million, Liberty Property Trust (NYSE: LPT ) , a real estate investment trust (REIT), issued a statement Thursday saying it was selling 97 properties with a total of 6.6 million square feet, for an estimated $705 million.
In addition to multiple properties in Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Minnesota, the deal includes Liberty's entire Jacksonville, Fla., portfolio consisting of 32 assets and more than 2.1 million square feet, Liberty said. The sale, according to Liberty's statement, will take place in two separate installments. The first stage is expected to close in late 2013, while the second and final installment should close in early 2014.
The objective of the sale, according to Liberty Chairman and CEO William Hankowsky, is it "furthers our strategy to increase our portfolio allocation to industrial real estate and to concentrate our office portfolio in fewer focused markets."
Prior to the recently announced sales, Liberty's commercial real estate portfolio included more than 700 properties in both the U.S. and the U.K. markets, and totaled more than 80 million square feet of industrial and office space.
The sale is subject to customary closing conditions.