Lee & Associates Arranges $24.2 Million Acquisition of Iconic Charleston Cigar Factory

  • Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Buyer to transform 244,000-square-foot building into mixed-use development


Lee & Associates has arranged the $24.2 acquisition of the 244,000 square foot Cigar Factory building, located at 701 E. Bay St. in Charleston, S.C. The buyer plans to invest significant capital to transform the five-story building into a mixed-use development that will include office, event, retail and restaurant space. Completion is slated for the first quarter of 2015.

Taylor Smith and Austin Wilson of Lee & Associates' Atlanta office, along with Amanda Reeves of Lee & Associates' Charleston office, represented the buyer, which is a joint venture between Federal Capital Partners (FCP) and Roi-Tan Investments LLC; the latter consists of a group of prominent investors led by William Cogswell of WECCO Development and Jay Weaver of Weaver Capital Partners. TSO Cigar Factory, LLC, sold the property. Ken Grimes of Patterson Real Estate Advisory Group raised equity for the transaction.

“The sale and redevelopment of the iconic Cigar Factory building show that investors are interested in spending significant capital in Charleston because of the strength of the market,” Weaver said. “With ample parking and close proximity to Interstate 26, the Cigar Factory building is sure to enjoy tremendous success as a mixed-use development.”

FCP and Roi-Tan will contribute equity capital for the redevelopment, and FCP will also provide mezzanine debt financing. The property is eligible to receive federal and state historic-property tax credits, as well as state tax credits for the rehabilitation of former textile mill sites. The total redevelopment is expected to exceed $55 million.

The Cigar Factory building, located in Charleston's Historic District, was first constructed in 1882 as a cotton mill before it was sold to American Tobacco Co. in the early 1900s. The company transformed it into a cigar factory, which it remained until the 1970s. Currently, the building includes office and commercial space.

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