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(photo credit: Courtesy)
Africa Israel Investments Ltd reported Monday that it had acquired the historical and prestigious New York Times building in Times Square, Manhattan for $525 million.
The purchase is the company's largest ever real estate deal in New York.
Africa Israel said that the deal fit in with the company's business strategy of large-scale investments in international projects.
The New York Times offices will move to a new building on 8th Avenue between 40th and 41st Streets this July.
In a similar massive deal in March, Africa Israel bought the Aphthorp building, a residential building in the Upper West Side of Manhattan, for $426 million. The early 20th-century icon includes apartments for rent, some 2,600 meters squared for commercial use and a 1,250 meter-squared parking lot.
Africa Israel intends to invest $170 million on renovating the newly-acquired property before letting it for offices, the company said in a statement.
The real estate company, owned by business tycoon Lev Leviev, already had extensive holdings in Jerusalem including a shopping mall and the now derelict, former President Hotel, which was the capital's first hotel with a swimming pool.
Africa Israel has expanded beyond its base in Israel in the past 10 years, seeking new sources of profit growth. The company recently bought its first properties in the Ukraine and Latin America.
In March, the company said fourth-quarter profits almost tripled, boosted by the sale of Russian real estate.
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