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Vornado's theMART in Chicago to House ConAgra Headquarters

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Vornado Realty Trust 's VNO theMART in Chicago has been selected as ConAgra Foods, Inc. CAG new headquarters. The real estate landlord has leased 168,000 square feet to ConAgra at its iconic property. The lease runs for 15 years.

With a total of 3.6 million rentable square feet in Chicago's River North submarket, theMART is among the largest commercial buildings in the world. It comprises two city blocks and 200,000-square-foot floors. As per theMART's website, the building is visited by 38,500 people each business day, which translates to a total of around 10 million people each year.

Acquired by Vornado in 1998, theMART's (formerly The Merchandise Mart) opening dates back to the mid-20th century. It was built for managing the Kennedy family's portfolio of real estate assets which were mainly related to the showroom business.

Vornado has been engaged in transforming the former showroom building into a major hub for technology and office tenants. Its tenant roaster includes reputed names like Motorola Mobility, Yelp Inc. YELP and eBay Inc. EBAY .

The latest leasing deal also reflects solid demand for space at this property. We believe that the transaction will consolidate Vornado's revenue stream from this property for a long time.

Vornado's Class A office properties are concentrated in a few select high-rent, high barrier-to-entry geographic markets

. The company, which had earlier been subject to criticism for venturing into too many sectors, has now taken to streamlining its business. These initiatives included the spin-off of Urban Edge Properties ("UE") earlier in the year.

Going forward, we expect this REIT's Class A office assets and diverse tenant base help the company scale new heights.

Vornado currently has a Zacks Rank # 2 (Buy), while ConAgra sports a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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