CHICAGO - OCTOBER 17: Pedestrians cross LaSalle Street in front of the Chicago Board of Trade in the financial District October 17, 2006 in Chicago, Illinois. It was announced October 17 that the Chicago Mercantile Exchange would purchase the Chicago Board of Trade for $8 billion in cash and stocks. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

CBOT towers sold for $151.5 million

SHARE CBOT towers sold for $151.5 million
SHARE CBOT towers sold for $151.5 million

CME Group Inc., owner of Chicago’s two leading futures markets, said Monday it has sold most of the Chicago Board of Trade complex at 141 W. Jackson for $151.5 million.

The sale to GlenStar Properties LLC and USAA Real Estate Co. covers the north and south towers of the complex, including the familiar landmark building that’s topped by a statue of Ceres, the Roman goddess of grain.

CME signed a 15-year deal to lease back 150,000 square feet of office space it occupies in the two buildings. In addition, it will retain ownership of the east building, which contains a trading floor for financial products.

Sources first reported the pending sale in February. CME emphasized it will keep its trading floors on the site.

The valuation is on the low end of what CME hoped to get when it put the property on the market last year.

But that was before the brokerage MF Global went bankrupt. MF Global was a large tenant within the CBOT building and the closure dealt it a financial blow.

The 141 W. Jackson buildings have a vacancy rate of 29 percent, said a spokesman for Jones Lang LaSalle Inc., a brokerage that assisted CME in the sale. Also advising CME was Holly Duran Real Estate Partners LLC.

Michael Klein, principal at GlenStar, said the company hopes to attract new types of users to the property, including technology firms. As a traditional base for trading firms, the property already has “extraordinary technological infrastructure and redundancies,” he said.

The sale allows CME “to continue to focus on what we do best – running our exchanges and providing risk management tools to the world,” said the company’s chief financial officer, Jamie Parisi.

The 141 W. Jackson building was designed in the Art Deco style by Holabird & Root in 1930 and is both a city and national historic landmark. For more than 30 years, it was the tallest building in Chicago.

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