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Darden's multi-million dollar commercial real estate transaction

Florida-based Darden Restaurants recently completed a real estate deal that is expected to help strengthen the company down the road. The multi-million dollar commercial real estate transaction, which involved the business's corporate headquarters building, closed at the end of October. This is a unique transaction as the company will actually remain in the building, having signed a 20 year lease with the new property owner.

Darden Restaurants is a company with a nationwide presence. It is the parent company of food establishments such as Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse. It owns property throughout the country and has, overall, been very successful throughout the years. Unfortunately, as is true for many businesses, monetary issues have occurred, and company owners believe that changes need to be made.

In an effort to help the company pay down debt and better utilize capital, Darden sold its company headquarters to Orlando Garden Property for $133 million. It also signed a 20 year lease, with an option to extend, in order to stay on the 9.5 acre property. This is a considerable deal for both parties involved, as the new property owner was able to buy the property for far less than Darden originally paid for it, and Darden is expected to save quite a bit by leasing rather than owning.

This commercial real estate transaction is just one of many that Darden intends to make in the near future. The company is actually in the process of selling off about 500 pieces of property which are located in Florida and other areas of the country. Transactions such as these can present a number of challenges. When dealing in commercial real estate, an experienced commercial real estate attorney can provide a variety of services in order to ensure such deals are completed smoothly and that all legal concerns are appropriately addressed.

Source: orlandosentinel.com, "Darden sells headquarters for $133 million, with lease back", Kyle Arnold, Oct. 28, 2015

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