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Downtown's 750 Main sold at $4.3M

BY Gregory Seay

12/5/2017
750 Main St., Hartford.
The New York operator of flexible office space in the Northeast has acquired downtown Hartford's historic 750 Main St. office tower for $4.3 million, authorities say.

Stark Business Solutions, of Rye Brook, N.Y., purchased the 18-story brick-and-limestone edifice abutting Travelers Tower on Nov. 15 from Houston-based 750 Main St. LLC, city records show. The seller paid $1.5 million for the building in 1998.

Stark Business founder-president Adam J. Stark confirmed his company's purchase, which is the 10th location in its portfolio.

Stark Office Suites' business model, Stark said, is leasing chunks of office space from landlords, then subletting parcels of space to short- and long-term tenants while providing them with a bundle of office services and amenities.

Stark Office Suites' other Connecticut office locations are at 243 Tresser Blvd. in Stamford; the Greenwich Office Park; and 100 Mill Plain Road in Danbury.

Stark said he and his investors conducted extensive due diligence on the building and the Hartford and Connecticut regions before deciding to purchase.

He said they were aware of the talk of Hartford's fiscal woes potentially landing it in bankruptcy and many city landlords' frustration with high property taxes. However, Stark said UConn's downtown campus, new apartments and the ballpark, convinced him Hartford is worth the investment.

"We definitely did our homework,'' said Stark, whose background is finance and who says he at one time worked a legendary New York mergers/acquisitions advisers Wasserstein & Perrella.

"I believe Hartford has the potential to be a really good business environment.''

He said he spoke neither to Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin nor his economic- and business-development aides before purchasing the building. However, he said he plans to reach out to them later.

Opened in 1921 as the Hartford Trust Building, 750 Main abuts the iconic Travelers Tower, headquarters for Travelers Cos. 750 Main contains 128,334 square feet of office space and was about 75 percent leased at the time of the sale, brokers say.

"It's a cool building. I love the building,'' Stark said. "I really like the location.''

Stark Office Suites will employ five to six staffers in the building, he said, to recruit tenants and tend to their needs. Stark said his company "is planning to do things, create things with the building," but declined to elaborate.