San Diego County draws Midwest interest A partnership between Newport Beach, Calif.-based Master Development Corp. and St. Louis-based Conning Asset Management Co., has sold North County Corporate Center, a 26-acre, 493,000 sq. ft. industrial complex in north San Diego County, Calif. The State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio purchased the business park for $27.5 million.

Completed in early June, the development consists of five buildings ranging from 70,000 sq. ft. to 125,000 sq. ft.

Amazon.com leases First Industrial building in Atlanta Chicago-based First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. has agreed to build an 800,000 sq. ft. food warehousing and distribution center for Seattle-based Amazon.com in McDonough, Ga. Amazon.com has signed a 10-year lease and will occupy the new facility upon its October completion.

First Industrial began spec construction in October 1998. The building was originally slated for 400,000 sq. ft., but First Industrial began adding an additional 400,000 sq. ft. in May.

Amazon.com's analysis pointed to an Atlanta-area distribution hub, and upon finding such a large development already under construction, the company knew it had a perfect match for its logistics strategy, says Amazon.com spokesperson Emily Glassman.

Binswanger arranges pair of Ohio deals Philadelphia-based Binswanger has arranged the sale of two Ohio manufacturing and distribution centers. First, Binswanger brokered the sale of an 850,000 sq. ft. facility on 60 acres in Celina, Ohio, on behalf of Miamisburg, Ohio-based Huffy Corp. New Bremen, Ohio-based Crown Equipment Corp. acquired the industrial building for an undisclosed amount.

Binswanger also arranged the sale of a 510,000 sq. ft. building in Urbana, Ohio. Racine, Wis.-based S.C. Johnson Wax sold the development to Rittal, a German manufacturer whose U.S. headquarters is in Springfield, Ohio.

Panattoni*Hillwood inks two Dallas-area leases Fort Worth, Texas-based Panattoni*Hillwood has leased more than 237,000 sq. ft. of a 400,000 sq. ft. spec building at Waters Ridge II Business Park in Lewisville, Texas. USCO Logistics will take 135,302 sq. ft., while LDBrinkman, one of the largest floorcovering distributors in the nation, will lease 102,000 sq. ft. USCO is a full-service logistics provider that manages more than 10 million sq. ft. of shared and dedicated distribution space for international corporations.

Since January, Panattoni*Hillwood - a joint venture formed in August 1998 between Sacramento, Calif.-based Panattoni Development Co. and Ft. Worth-based Hillwood - has combined to lease more than 1.6 million sq. ft. in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area.

Brandywine switches gears Newtown Square, Pa.-based Brandywine Realty Trust has sold a 1.95 million sq. ft. industrial portfolio to a newly formed partnership headed by Foster City, Calif.-based Bailard, Biehl & Kaiser Real Estate Investment Trust Inc. (BB&K REIT). The transaction includes 17 properties with 21 industrial buildings located in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. Brandywine will receive $82.9 million with the potential to earn an additional $600,000 based on additional leasing.

Once BB&K REIT reaches a pre-specified rate of return, Brandywine is entitled to a profit participation of 35% interest in incremental cash flow and a 40% to 60% interest in the proceeds from future sales of the properties. Brandywine will continue to operate as the portfolio's leasing, property management and construction agent.

The sale, along with a $105 million convertible preferred stock offering, help to de-leverage the company and improve Brandywine's financial flexibility, according to Gerard H. Sweeney, Brandywine president and CEO.

Brandywine has also formed a joint venture with Dallas-based Invesco Realty Advisors Inc. to fund additional industrial development and acquisitions. Invesco will contribute $25 million in equity to expand the venture's presence in Delaware, southern New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Brandywine will have the ability, but not the obligation, to match the equity contribution and receive an equivalent rate of return or promoted interest in new developments and acquisitions. Brandywine will act as the venture's leasing agent, development manager and property manager. Brandywine has also granted the joint venture an option on certain Pennsylvania and New Jersey industrial land holdings that can accommodate 400,000 sq. ft. of industrial development.

San Diego county draws Midwest interest A partnership between Newport Beach, Calif.-based Master Development Corp. and St. Louis-based Conning Asset Management Co., has sold North County Corporate Center, a 26-acre, 493,000 sq. ft. industrial complex in north San Diego County, Calif. The State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio purchased the business park for $27.5 million.

Completed in early June, North County Corporate Center consists of five buildings ranging in size from 70,000 sq. ft. to 125,000 sq. ft.

GES Exhibition Services inks SoCal lease Las Vegas-based GES Exhibition Services has leased 311,237 sq. ft. of industrial space in Garden Grove, Calif. Bryon Ward in the Newport Beach, Calif., office of Northbrook, Ill.-based Grubb & Ellis represented GES and the landlord, New Jersey-based the Sudler Cos. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

GES Exhibition Services expects to occupy the building at 7300 Chapman Ave. in September. The facility, which will serve as the company's regional headquarters, was formerly a warehouse for Montgomery Ward. GES will relocate from Santa Fe Springs, Calif.