• Thomas Russell

BB&T acquires High Point's Atrium

HIGH POINT - North Carolina- based bank, BB&T has acquired The Atrium showroom building here for $2 million, according to officials familiar with the transaction.
     Located at 430 S. Main St., the 221,590-square-foot, four story building has served as both furniture retail and furniture showroom space over most of its 30-year history.
     Building owner Steve Ikerd tried to auction it last year. However, since he did not receive any acceptable offers, he kept it listed for sale in the $4 million-$5 million range.
     Since there were no offers at that price, Ikerd decided to hold another auction of the facility on April 25. A minimum published reserve bid was set at $2 million. The property has an estimated local tax value of $9.1 million.
BB&T ultimately acquired it at the minimum bid.
     The auction was handled by Stephen Jax & Associates of Greenville, S.C. Steve Cooney, an auctioneer with the firm, said that there was some interest in the building, but that its use as a furniture showroom could have limited its appeal among potential bidders.
     "They weren't looking past that, and that was an obstacle we couldn't overcome," he said. However, he said he believes that High Point remains an attractive market and provides opportunities for real estate investors.
     "We think High Point is a changing market," he said. "Obviously furniture is the rock of the community, but we think from what we have seen and from the people that we talk to that High Point has an opportunity to create a new identity for itself. With the real estate that is available, there are some extremely good deals in the market there."
     Ikerd was not available for immediate comment. A BB&T spokesman said the bank acquired the building as part of a negotiated settlement and plans to sell it at a later date.

Thomas RussellThomas Russell | Associate Editor, FurnitureToday
trussell@furnituretoday.com

I'm Tom Russell and have worked at Furniture/Today since August 2003. Since then, I have covered the international side of the business from a logistics and sourcing standpoint. Since then, I also have visited several furniture trade shows and manufacturing plants in Asia, which has helped me gain perspective about the industry in that part of the world. As I continue covering the import side of the business, I look forward to building on that knowledge base through conversations with industry officials and future overseas plant tours. From time to time, I will file news and other industry perspectives online and, as always, welcome your response to these Web postings.

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