Wilmington City Council approves first step to possible purchase of Thermo Fisher Campus

Wilmington City Council approves first step to possible purchase of Thermo Fisher Campus
Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 7:46 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 24, 2023 at 10:03 PM EST
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - On Tuesday evening, Wilmington City Council unanimously approved two items related to the first step towards the possible purchase of the Thermo Fisher building and adjacent properties downtown.

The first is a resolution authorizing the city manager to enter into an Offer to Purchase contract with River Ventures, LLC. The second is a resolution for the city to spend $750,000 on the first steps in the process of completing the deal. Here is a closer look at some of the dollar amounts and specifics associated with the items.

City Manager Tony Caudle recommended the city council approve spending $750,000, and that the deal is an option for helping the city solve its current and future space needs.

According to the meeting’s agenda documents, $500,000 of that amount will be a deposit for the purchase of the Thermo Fisher campus along North Front Street, which includes “approximately 12.5 acres of land, approximately 370,000 square feet of office space, and over 1,500 parking spaces.” With city council approving the purchase, Caudle says his office would enter into the contract “on or around January 25, 2023.”

The extra $250,000, according to the documents, will enable the city staff to secure and pay for the services needed to complete the due diligence work, which will have to be completed in 120 days.

As far as key terms and conditions of the purchase offer:

  • The city agrees to pay $68 million for the properties, furnishings and equipment.
  • The city will deposit $500,000, which will be refundable for the first 120 days of the total 165-day “examination period.” During that first 120 days, the city can terminate the offer for any reason or for no reason.
  • The city agrees to deposit an additional $300,000 by the 120th day of the “examination period.” After the 120th day, the initial deposit of $500,000 and the additional $300,000 will become nonrefundable.
  • After the city completes the purchase, River Ventures, LLC, agrees to lease either three floors or 60,000 square feet in the building for $30 per square foot for three years.
  • Closing will take place within 15 days of the end of the “examination period,” but no later than July 31, 2023.

You can read the document for this item on the city council agenda by clicking here.