Worcester Business Journal
Lundgren Equity Partners purchased two properties at the Southbridge Innovation Center, adding to the multi-million-dollar holdings the Auburn real estate investment and development already owned at the sprawling campus.
Lundgren bought the 39,000-square-foot facility at 10 Cabot St. for $2.1 million and the 34,000-square-foot 80 Optical Drive for $3.8 million in a deal that closed on May 27, according to Worcester real estate firm Kelleher & Sadowsky Associates, whose Chris Naff and Jim Umphrey brokered the deal.
The properties were acquired as an investment because they both boast strong cash flow, said Naff in an email.
Manufacturers Cleanpart Group, a German subsidiary of Mitsubishi Chemical Europe GmbH, and Southbridge’s Element Precision lease space at 10 Cabot, and Franklin Realty Advisors occupies 80 Optical, according to the Southbridge Innovation Center website.
The seller of the properties was Franklin Realty Advisors LLC of Wellesley, which is run by developer Chip Norton. Franklin is one of the largest owners of Central Massachusetts commercial real estate and its holdings include The Mercantile Center in Worcester and the Worcester Business Center.
Previously Lundgren acquired 5-15 Wells St. in January 2021 for $5.75 million, according to the Worcester District Registry of Deeds. The two buildings combined contain 114,700 square feet and were fully occupied at the time of purchase.
Franklin Realty Advisors developed the Southbridge Innovation Center in cooperation with the Worcester Business Development Corp. The 150-acre campus is the former location of manufacturer American Optical, one of the region’s largest employers before slowly being phased out in Southbridge between 1979 and 2010.
The development contains the Southbridge Hotel and Conference Center, office space, light manufacturing, and housing. Two properties at the Center, 35 and 50 Optical Drive, are currently for sale or lease.
By Timothy Doyle