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February 12, 2015

David Robinson, the Admiral, teams up with Security Properties on $40M Kent acquisition

Puget Sound Business Journal

Marc Stiles

Professional basketball legend David Robinson and Seattle real estate investment company Security Properties have jointly paid $40.2 million for a 304-unit apartment complex in Kent.

Robinson, a member of the basketball Hall of Fame, is known as the Admiral because he was an officer in the U.S. Navy. In a fitting twist, the name of the property that his company, Admiral Capital Group, and Security Properties bought is Waters Edge. It's at 6305 S. 236th Place in the Lakes master-planned community. This is Admiral Capital's first acquisition in Seattle area.

Holland Residential of Vancouver, Wash., and Dick Keller sold the Waters Edge. They had paid $31.5 million for the property three years ago, according to public records.

Philanthropic groups in the Puget Sound region will benefit from Admiral Capital's investment. That's because Robinson and company co-founder Daniel Bassichis, formerly of Goldman Sachs, have pledged 10 percent of their profits to charities in areas where the company invests.

Security Properties CEO David Dufenhorst on Wednesday said he has yet to meet the 7-foot, 1-inch Robinson, who played for the San Antonio Spurs.

"I hope he comes up for the closing dinner," Dufenhorst said.

In a press release, Robinson said he and his partners see "immediate opportunity to improve the living experience for [Waters Edge] residents while create value for our investors."

In partnership with USAA Real Estate Co., Admiral Capital buys "value-add" office, hotel, apartments and retail properties. Value-add properties are ones that might need some sprucing up. The new owners said they will continue making improvements that Holland had started, including replacing decks and adding a playground to the 28-year-old property.

Dufenhorst said a lack of new apartment construction in South King County, along with the area's growing job base, prompted the acquisition, the latest of 19 Puget Sound area properties that Security owns. He said only about 300 new units are under construction in the south end, compared to thousands going up in Seattle and Bellevue.

While South King County apartment rents have been increasing, they haven't been going up as fast as in the city. Dufenhorst thinks this will change as the lack of new supply catches up with suburban markets as demand for apartments in places like Kent increases as more and more people are priced out of Seattle.

The number of jobs is increasing in Kent, the fourth largest manufacturing and distribution center in the United States. Amazon.com is about to open to a large distribution center in Kent, and two national retailers are looking for sites for equally large distribution centers.

Philip Assouad and Giovanni Napoli, commercial real estate brokers with Kidder Mathews, handled the Waters Edge sale.

For the full story, go to Puget Sound Business Journal.

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