J.C. Penney has sold its Plano corporate headquarters to a Dallas-based investment group.
The sale, one of the largest of the year in North Texas, was quietly completed in the final hours of 2016, Collin County deed records show.
A partnership headed by investor Sam Ware’s Dreien Opportunity Partners paid more than $400 million for the 1.8 million-square-foot headquarters complex just west of the Dallas North Tollway.
And along with the Penney buildings, almost 40 acres of surrounding land were included in the deal.
The property is surrounded on two sides by the $3 billion Legacy West development — the largest real estate project currently underway in North Texas.
The new owners have said they plan to sell and develop the land surrounding Penney’s offices and will renovate the sprawling 1980s headquarters complex.
The retailer plans to consolidate its offices into about 600,000 square feet in the north end of the building.
Penney’s downsizing will leave more than 1 million square feet of office space that can be renovated and rented to other businesses.
The vacant land along Legacy Drive is zoned for the construction office and retail space. Lawns and a small pond occupy the land now; the pond would stay.
Ware said Monday that an announcement of the purchase was pending.
The big retailer announced in February that it would sell its headquarters, which is more than 20 years old.
Penney hired commercial real estate firm CBRE to find a buyer. After receiving multiple bids for the property, Penney chose Ware’s group as the buyer.
The purchase was financed in part with a $388.7 million mortgage from Beal Bank, the firm owned by Dallas billionaire Andy Beal.
A second $50 million note and cash were also listed in the terms of the purchase.
The Penney headquarters couldn’t be better located. The campus is just across the street from where Toyota is building its new North American headquarters. And JPMorgan Chase and Liberty Mutual Insurance are building huge new regional office centers next door.
The $400 million Legacy West Urban Village is just east of the Penney property and will open this spring with shops, restaurants, office space and apartments.
The Penney sale is second in size only to the recent $825 million purchase of State Farm Insurance’s 2 million-square-foot Richardson campus. South Korean and U.S. investors paid $825 million for the four towers near the Bush Turnpike.
The 51-acre, 1.1 million-square-foot Verizon campus in Irving also sold earlier this year for $344 million to Mesirow Financial of Chicago.