International investor takes leap into Austin market with office purchase

Sep 19, 2014
Austin Business Journal

An international private real estate investment company has purchased Centennial Towers in north central Austin and has ambitious plans to add to its local portfolio

Taurus Investment Holdings LLC, based in Boston, purchased the six-story office property at 505 E. Huntland Drive from Braun Enterprises of Houston for an undisclosed price. The Travis Central Appraisal District most recently valued the property at about $15.1 million

The 156,000-square-foot property was built in 1986 and is 99 percent occupied with tenants that currently include Securitas Security Services Inc, KBR USA Inc., Texas A&M University and Walsh, Anderson, Brown, Gallegos & Green, P.C

“We like that submarket with its location near Austin Community College and the [redevelopment of the] Highland Mall. We feel it’s a premier facility,” said Matthew Reibling, director of acquisitions for Texas and the Midwest

Taurus has retained Austin-based ECR to handle leasing and management. Taurus will invest in capital improvements but hasn’t determined how much it will spend as yet

Though Taurus has not purchased commercial properties locally until now, the company has had a presence here since 2005 when it acquired more than 2,000 acres in East Austin near State Highway 130. Through the Dallas offices, it’s been moving forward with the development of Whisper Valley and Indian Hills — two massive master-planned communities

Reibling is not directly involved in those developments but said the projects are moving along and more information will be forthcoming soon

In the meantime, Reibling is touring various other office properties on the market and hopes to add more commercial properties to the company’s portfolio

He moved to Austin this spring from Atlanta and settled in a new townhouse in East Austin. He loves the city and is an avid skydiver. Some weekends he hangs out at iFly, the skydiving simulation facility in northwest Austin

Reibling’s father Guenther Reibling and uncle Lorenz Reibling started the real estate invesment company in the 1970s in Munich, Germany. They later relocated to Florida, where Matt was born and then moved the corporate headquarters to Boston. Peter Merrigan joined the company in 1997 and the three currently share leadership of the firm, which owns properties in Europe, Asia, Latin America, Canada and the U.S

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