We have yet another sign of a real estate comeback — this time from the IPO market.
Lehman Brothers Holdings has made a filing with the SEC to raise about $3.45 billion for Archstone, an apartment REIT. The company will be listed on the NYSE under the sticker “ASN,’ and lead underwriters include JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and Citigroup (NYSE:C).
Archstone’s portfolio currently includes 169 apartment properties, with locations in San Francisco, New York, Boston, Seattle and the District of Columbia, among others.
Back in 2007, Lehman and Tishman Speyer took Archstone private in a $23.7 billion transaction. Of course, the deal quickly turned into a disaster and the company plunged into bankruptcy.
Since then, Archstone has undergone a painful restructure and has sold off a variety of assets to pay down its debt load. However, real estate is recovering, and Archstone boasts healthy figures like an occupancy rate of 94.2% with an average rent per unit of $2,168.
The time seems right for Archstone’s IPO, which might happen within the next few weeks. And if the deal is successful, you might see other private equity-backed real estate offerings come to market in 2013.
One possible deal on my radar: Blackstone Group’s (NYSE:BX) Hilton Hotels.
Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPOPlaybook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He is also the author of “How to Create the Next Facebook.” Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.