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Press November 16, 2018

Miami-based investment firm buys Detroit property, plans new office

Miami-based real estate investor and developer Spider bought a building at 4264 Grand River Ave. and five surrounding vacant lots. It aims to redevelop the building for a new Detroit office.

International real estate firm Spider plans renovation of Grand River building Buys six parcels for $425,000. Company controls around 200 units in Detroit multifamily, single-family housing

A Miami-based international real estate investment firm purchased a building and a handful of properties near Detroit's Woodbridge neighborhood, planning to locate an office and co-working space there.

Spider, a group that oversees companies including Spider Investments and Spider Ventures, controls around 200 units in Detroit, in single family and multifamily properties. Now it's looking to make its presence more public, aiming to renovate a building at 4264 Grand River Ave. and house a small office there, said Alejandro Eskenazi, corporate vice president.

Generally Spider buys properties, redevelops them and then takes on investors, many of whom are based in Latin America. Its portfolio in Miami is larger, with bigger multifamily projects, Eskenazi said.

Spider bought the Grand River property west of Midtown through Real Estate One and Detroit-based O'Connor Real Estate.O'Connor represented the seller, listed in Detroit records as 4731 Group LLC, registered to Derek Weaver, who worked in the past on the Grand River Creative Corridor art and revitalization project that launched in 2012.

The Miami real estate firm took hold of six parcels clustered around and including the 5,600-square-foot building, which was built in two sections in 1933 and 1958, according to O'Connor Real Estate. Eskenazi said Spider will take control of the site around the end of the year.

 Spider bought the properties for $425,000 total, according to Detroit property records and O'Connor agent Vincent Mazzola. The other five properties, a total of nearly 20,000 square feet of vacant land, are at 2035 Calumet St., 2036 Calumet St., 2027 Calumet St., 2041 Calumet St. and 4243 Vermont St.

Extensive renovation work would ideally start in the beginning of next year, with a yet-to-be-determined team of Spider staff moving in after. It will open alongside co-working space, but details weren't yet available. The mural-covered building will likely still have art across it after the renovation, but Eskenazi said Spider hasn't yet decided if it'll keep the current art or change it.

Contractors for the project haven't been finalized and Eskenazi said he couldn't yet estimate a total investment figure. The next planned step would be building new commercial structures, offices or retail, on the nearby vacant land.

It's a "strategic location," Eskenazi said. "It's definitely in the proximity to downtown, where we believe the growth is going to go, toward that area ... We're looking for more projects and to keep on growing our portfolio and our presence there (in Detroit)."

Spider is also making architectural plans for rehab of an 11-unit, two-building multifamily property west of Detroit's New Center, near the Motown Museum and Rosa Parks Boulevard. Eskenazi said he expects the 2019 Marquette St. redevelopment to finish around March and was not yet able to estimate a project cost.

In addition to its work as a developer and investor, the real estate company provides specialist services surrounding real estate investments, including legal, financial and accounting. It expects to develop a hotel in Miami Beach's North Beach area next year and has another project in Miami that was stopped due to a slow condo market, Eskenazi said, among other developments in the works.

SOURCE: Crain's Detroit Business


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