Corrections or additions?
These articles by Barbara Fox were prepared for the July 25, 2001
edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Real Estate News
The Buchanan Ingersoll law firm plans to move out of
20,000 square feet at 650 College Road and into the new building,
700 Alexander Park, by the end of September. Meanwhile the Hale and
Dorr law firm has moved into 42,000 square feet on the third floor
of 650 College Road and, because it holds the lease for both spaces,
it is in charge of leasing the BI quarters.
Until some of the BI attorneys left to set up the first Princeton
office of Hale and Dorr, all of this space had been occupied by
Ingersoll. The Hale and Dorr people occupied temporary space at the
Carnegie Center and then moved back where they were before.
Hale and Dorr, based in Boston, worked out a deal so that it holds
the lease on all the space. Now Milt Charbonneau and Brian McMamimon
of Colliers Houston are in charge of the sublease. In addition to
the elegantly appointed finished space, Colliers Houston is also
6,000 square feet of raw unfinished space on the third floor. Jerry
Fennelly of NAI Fennelly is representing BI.
Based in Pittsburgh, BI is 150 years old and last year was ranked
65th in size nationally. Ivan Punchatz (Gettysburg College, Class
of 1971, and Seton Hall) is the partner-in-charge. He prosecuted
cases as the former state deputy attorney general and now heads the
BI also recently added a bankruptcy and creditors practice, led by
Louis T. DeLucia and Alan J. Brody, to the Princeton office. The
also has these practice areas: banking and finance including Uniform
Commercial Code litigation, commercial transactions, labor law, and
"We continue to have a very significant office in Princeton and
to develop the growth of our legal work throughout New Jersey,"
says William R. Newlin, president and CEO of Buchanan Ingersoll.
graduated from Princeton University in 1962, and has a law degree
from the University of Pittsburgh. In the 20 years that he has headed
this law firm, it has grown from 78 to more than 400 attorneys and
from 3 to 15 offices, and it is now one of the largest and "most
steadily growing" law firms in the United States.
"Our Princeton office fits in extremely well, particularly when
you consider that we have very important Philadelphia and New York
offices," says Newlin. "By the end of the year we will
the plan for the office, but it will clearly contemplate significant
growth as we move into next year."
College Road East, Princeton 08540. Ivan Punchatz, partner-in-charge.
609-987-6800; fax, 609-520-0360. Www.bipc.com
08540. David J. Sorin, partner in charge. 609-750-7600; fax,
Primedia Inc, a company with roots in the horse racing
business, has sold one of its Princeton-based companies, acquired
another company, sold its Lake Drive building, and drastically
its new media group. Headquartered in New York, Primedia sold its
64,000-foot enclave at 10 Lake Drive in East Windsor in June to Neil
Laboratories, a drug maker that already has a 30,000 square-foot
at 55 Lake Drive.
A glimpse at the Primedia bloodlines: The race track bible, the Daily
Racing Form, used to be headquartered in Hightstown and owned by the
Annenbergs. It was sold to Rupert Murdoch’s organization, then to
K-III Directory Corporation, and K-III changed its name to Primedia.
Primedia sold the Daily Racing Form in 1998 and then sold Primedia
Information, a directory company, last fall.
The resulting new company, Commonwealth Business Media, has moved
to Windsor Corporate Park, the former Lockheed Martin plant on
Road. Among its databases and directory publications are those for
transportation, rail, shipping, and classical music. Alan Glass, the
chairman of Commonwealth Business Media, had been the chief operating
officer at Primedia Information.
Windsor Corporate Park, Cranbury 08512. Alan Glass, CEO. 609-371-7700;
fax, 609-371-7879. Home page: www.cbizmedia.com
Another entity of Primedia’s, IndustryClick, has also
moved out of Lake Drive into leased space, 20,000 square feet at
Forrestal Village. Led by Tim Andrews, formerly of Dow Jones, it is
a business-to-business Internet operation with vertical online
serving niche industries. Andrews had said he planned to staff up
to 200 people here, but at least 20 jobs have been lost as a result
of reorganization caused by the acquisition of Manhattan-based
which owns special interest websites.
Primedia aimed to reduce expenses this year by $49 million as a result
of this merger. To the question of how many people actually work in
Forrestal Village, a spokesperson, Karen Garrison, Kansas-based
of corporate communications, says that there is "no clear crisp
After the reorganization, IndustryClick is known as Primedia’s New
Media Division and is part of Intertec, the Kansas City-based
and trade publication and exhibitions company, says Garrison. Andrews,
who was not available for an interview, still reports to David Ferm,
president and CEO of Primedia’s business to business group, but his
group is now called the New Media Division.
Primedia bills itself as a targeted media company with sales of 1.7
billion in 2000; it owns more than 230 magazines, including New York,
Seventeen, American Demographics, American Baby, and Fly Fisherman.
With Intertec Publishing it has 100 publications, more than 30 trade
shows, and 450 books and directories. With the acquisition of
it gained more than 1,000 special interest websites. In the education
area it owns Channel One, an educational channel for schools, as well
as the 65-person Films for the Humanities & Sciences on Perrine Road
"Some people, because of the merger, are now working in New York
City," says Garrison. "We have been busy for 115 years and
continue to be busy today. All companies evolve as times change and
as businesses change."
Primedia sold its 64,000-foot building at 10 Lake Drive to Neil
in June for $2.75 million or about $42 per square foot. Doug Twyman
represented both owner and buyer through Newmark JGT and GVA Williams,
and Chris Helgesan of GVA Williams was also involved. For a Twin
commercial property, which has mostly warehouses, this property has
an unusual amount of finished office space — about 65 percent.
The 64,000-foot building is situated on 20 acres.
08540. Timothy Andrews. 609-571-4500. Www.industryclick.com
Another Primedia organization with a Princeton address
has expanded. This spring Films for the Humanities and Sciences
an educational materials firm in West Virginia, Cambridge Technology,
and staffed up from about 45 people in the winter to more than 100
people now. Owned by Primedia, Films for the Humanities and Sciences
has among its collections the science films of the WGBH collection,
Nova, and TV Ontario. The clients are schools, universities, health
care institutions, and business.
Perrine Road, Monmouth Junction, Box 2053, Princeton 08543-2053. Betsy
Sherer, CEO. 609-275-1400; fax, 609-275-3767. Www.films.com
A north Jersey-based Sarnoff spinoff, e-vue, will go
public by doing a reverse buyout. A small dotcom company is
E-vue by issuing from 10 to 13 million shares of stock, effectively
tripling its stock outstanding. The stock will be worth from $7.1
to $9.2 million, but E-vue will control the firm. The dotcom,
is based in Great Neck, New York, and it has a website that helps
decide legal disputes. The agreement is expected to go through by
E-vue takes advantage of Sarnoff’s many interactive multimedia
and it aims to be the leading branded technology leader in stream
rich media for the mass market. It develops, markets, and distributes
MPEG-4 compliant technologies for speedy network delivery and display
of still images and video with only low bandwidth.
"E-Vue has taken the lead in the MPEG-4 market, and they have
done a tremendous job bringing MPEG-4 to the masses," says Ed
Hansch, marketing vice president. "As a result of this imaging
ingenuity, more people will have enjoyable — and faster —
Web experiences." One feature of e-vue’s software: progressive
downloading and display of still images, so viewers first see the
whole picture in a smaller size or at low resolution, but then see
it build to full quality and size.
In late 1999 e-vue was Sarnoff’s 14th spin-off. Its president, Kenneth
Sun went to school in China at Nan Jing University, Class of 1983,
and earned his PhD in physics at State University of New York at
He did computational protein chemistry and drug design for
companies until 1994 when he turned to the venture capital side of
the business and joined Global China Investments, a joint venture
between a Canadian government pension fund and a Hong Kong investment
fund. Then he worked with Princeton-based venture capitalist, Robert
Johnston, at Johnston Associates on Cherry Valley Road.
Seed stage investors include the Tisch family, John Levin, and Charles
Xue, a high-tech entrepreneur (U.S. 1, October 27, 1999). Xue
"shoo"), 46, went to the Chinese Academy in China and has
a graduate degree from Berkeley. With Peter Wang he founded a
a Lucent-like company based in China that had offices in Iselin and
San Francisco. Xue is board chairman.
08830. Kenneth Sun, president. 732-590-0102; fax, 732-452-9726. Home
Victor Murray says his watershed moment came when he
was 17 years old and had to choose whether to move with his family
to Niagara Falls or stay with his grandparents in Pittsburgh to finish
his senior year in high school. Lots of people raised eyebrows over
his decision to move. But as Murray now says, "I realized you
have to step out of your comfort zone. My thought was, I’d best learn
how to get out and meet new people. That was probably a defining
Every three to five years, he believes, "it’s good to do what
you do a little differently." His most recent change in direction
is closing the commercial real estate firm that he and his wife,
ran for 14 years. This also drew criticism. "A lot of people think
we have lived the American dream and that we have given up our
says Murray. "But it was time to do something different."
After shutting the doors at the Victor Group office on Alexander Road,
Murray is working for the Aegis Group, which has offices in
Through Aegis, he still works with his former clients, doing tenant
representation or as a consultant, but he is also responsible for
leasing 900,000 feet in Camden, Trenton, and Princeton, including
Arbor 600 on College Road, and 650 and 750 College Road, plus the
Aegis properties in Trenton — State Street Square and 28 West
Victor Murray is an avid collector of mottos, and 18 years ago, when
his wife was pregnant with the son who is now a high school senior,
he made a plaque for the boy: "Life is an adventure to be lived,
not a problem to be solved."
Murray says his adventurous spirit came from his father, who developed
high rises in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, including 1600 Market
ironically, is the current address of Aegis). "He used to take
the blueprints home, and the ones he didn’t need he would give us
to crayon on. I was the one of the three brothers who asked, `What’s
on the other side?’"
After graduating from Penn State in 1976, Murray met his wife at
Bank. It was an era when "fraternizing," dating or even
within the bank, was frowned upon. "We still have the letter
it was OK to get married and that we could keep our jobs," he
Murray joined Oliver Realty in Pittsburgh, an employee-owned company
that he helped to grow from 30 to 200 people. The Aegis Group reminds
him of those halcyon days, he says. In 1983 he made another seemingly
unlikely decision: To move to Princeton to represent the Enerplex
buildings, two Prudential properties on Research Way that were hard
to rent at that time because they used alternative energy sources.
"People asked, why would you move your family to handle buildings
that were struggling?" he remembers, and quotes another one motto,
this one referencing the slag fires of the Pittsburgh steel mills:
The strongest deals are always forged from the hottest fires. "But
soon we had GE and Dow Jones in the buildings, and that kicked it
off. Prudential gave us the other seven buildings."
Fourteen years ago, a year after Oliver was bought by Grubb & Ellis,
Victor and his wife, Lynne, started their own company. They had
to nothing, very little capital," but that helped them make
business decisions, he believes, than did companies with capital to
squander. "We had good years and bad years and great years and
so so years, but when your wife works with you, and she knows what
the books are, you can plan your lifestyle conservatively."
"People say that two people on their own can’t make it, but we
proved that isn’t necessarily true," says Murray, quoting the
axiom promulgated by the Disney managers, that "doing the
is kind of fun."
"I chose to do some of the larger ones and that was a risk, I
don’t deny that. We closed only a few deals a year." His largest
single lease was 400,000 feet for ETS at the Carnegie Center.
Now Murray is busy leasing Arbor 600, the 247,000 square foot College
Road building that was at one time Princeton’s "largest spec
("on spec" meaning that the tenants have not been signed when
He thinks this market will be good for Trenton, where Aegis has some
of its prize properties. "It is a great city and a great
Using Merrill Lynch as an example, he commends that company for
its offices through various submarkets, so that as it funnels people
into its new development near Hopewell, no one market is hit hard.
"That was very thoughtful. But can you imagine what would it would
have meant to the future of the city, if Merrill Lynch had built its
new complex in Trenton?"
08540. Victor Murray, president.
Suite 112, Trenton 08608. James A. Kinzig, partner. 609-393-8457;
fax, 609-599-1782. Home page: www.aegispg.com.
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