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INTERNATIONAL REAL ESTATE AUCTION BIDS TOTAL NEARLY $200 MILLION

INTERNATIONAL REAL ESTATE AUCTION BIDS TOTAL NEARLY $200 MILLION
 Final Results Expected In 30 Days
 LOS ANGELES, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 1,000 people packed the Los Angeles Ballroom at the Century Plaza Hotel to participate in the International Auction of U.S. Commercial Real Estate held here today. Today's auction produced bids for 34 properties totalling $178.2 million, $170 million of which were immediately accepted, and bids representing another $100 million in sales are in negotiation and are expected to be accepted within 30 days.
 The Bunker Hill Towers apartment complex in downtown Los Angeles, which sold for $19.1 million, was the highest bid of the day. The property was sold to James Wong, chairman of Hon Kwok Land Investment Company Ltd. of Hong Kong.
 The auction was a joint venture of two leading real estate firms, Kennedy-Wilson Inc., a leading real estate auction-marketing firm, and Jones Lang Wootton USA, the international real estate services leader.
 The auction today represented a diverse portfolio of income- producing properties, including office buildings, retail centers, multifamily and hotels. The sellers are U.S. banks, insurance companies, pension funds, corporate owners and individuals.
 "We're very pleased with today's results," said Bill McMorrow, chairman and chief executive officer of Kennedy-Wilson Inc. "The U.S. real estate market is at its most depressed point in years. Given these conditions, it is a major accomplishment to sell such a large amount of commercial real estate in one day.
 "This auction introduced interested buyers to motivated sellers, and over the next few weeks, we expect that bids will be accepted on another $118 million of properties," he added
 McMorrow attributed the success of the International Auction of U.S. Commercial Real Estate to the worldwide marketing effort launched by Kennedy-Wilson and Jones Lang Wootton's brokerage and marketing teams. An army of sales people was deployed on six continents to contact institutional and individual investors, and ads were placed in 72 publications in 12 languages.
 "Buyers in this auction represented 'smart money,'" said Simon Milde, managing director and chairman of Jones Lang Wootton USA. "These buyers have been waiting for the right time to invest ... today was the right time!
 "With the fluctuating economy, it has been difficult in recent years for buyers and sellers to determine market value," Milde continued. "Clearly, this auction showed that there are plenty of people willing to buy if the sellers are realistic about reserve prices."
 "However," explained Jim Peterson, executive vice president of Kennedy-Wilson, who spearheaded the auction, "it is important to note that this auction is not a reflection of the entire U.S. commercial real estate market. In an auction, each property stands alone. Its bidding level reflects buyer confidence in that region, property, location and tenant prospects."
 Properties that commanded high prices were the Kona Kai Resort & Marina in San Diego that sold for $13.5 million; 350 North La Salle, a 15-story office building in downtown Chicago that sold for $9.3 million; the 209-unit Crescent Centre Apartments in Louisville, Ky. that sold for $7.3 million; and the University Place Shopping Center in Huntsville, Ala. that sold for $7.6 million.
 -0- 8/13/92
 /CONTACT: Barbara Casey of Casey & Sayre, 310-457-3676, for International Auction of U.S. Commercial Real Estate/ CO: International Auction of U.S. Commercial Real Estate ST: California IN: REA SU:


BP-LS -- LA048 -- 9825 08/13/92 21:34 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 13, 1992
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