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Tampa Bay Times sells St. Petersburg headquarters, will remain in building as tenant

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The Tampa Bay Times has sold its downtown St. Petersburg headquarters.

The Times Publishing Company, which produces the newspaper, announced Friday it sold its St. Petersburg headquarters to 490 First Avenue Owner LLC, a venture of Convergent Capital Partners and Denholtz Associates. The sale price was $19 million.

The newspaper has a 15-year lease and will remain a tenant of the building, occupying nearly half the building. The building will continue to bear the newspaper’s name.

“With this sale, we are able to continue contributing to the vitality of downtown St. Petersburg. We are very pleased that the Times will remain a tenant and maintain its significant presence in the area,” said Times CFO Jana Jones in a statement.

The newspaper’s Tampa office on Ashley Street is located in a building owned by Denholtz Associates that also bears the paper’s name.

“Our relationship with the Times and with the Tampa Bay community spans two decades and is part of what made this deal possible,” said Steven Denholtz, CEO of Denholtz Associates, in a statement announcing the sale. “We look forward to the modernization of the Times headquarters building and to continuing to build a strong relationship with the entire community.”

Denholtz Associates is a privately held, fully integrated real estate development, investment and management company. The company actively targets multi-tenant office and industrial properties. The firm has offices throughout Florida, as well as in Chicago and New Jersey.

Convergent Capital Partners LLC is a privately owned real estate private equity firm headquartered in Tampa. Since October 2008, it has acquired over $530 million of retail, office, hotel, residential, and mixed-use real estate assets and commercial mortgage debt.

“Convergent is excited to make another significant investment in downtown St. Pete.  The construction and redevelopment activity is continuing to strengthen the city’s position as a place to live, work, and play,” said Santosh Govindaraju, CEO of Convergent Capital Partners.  “The Tampa Bay Times and the high-quality team at this award-winning newspaper are a very important part of our Tampa Bay community, and we look forward to being a part of their growth in the years ahead.”

Several other newspapers have sold their buildings or put them up for sale, including the Tampa Tribune and Miami Herald. The company has sold three other properties in recent months.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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