Dallas Morning News Building Second Aquisition in a Week for Washburne


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Four days ago, Ray Washburne’s Charter Holdings snapped up the Trinity West shopping center at Singleton Boulevard and Hampton Road. Late Friday, it was announced his Charter DMN Holdings had also purchased the former Dallas Morning News building.

Known by many as the “Rock of Truth” because of the words etched on the front, Washburne’s company purchased the campus for $28 million, paying $5.6 million in cash paid today at closing, and a two-year promissory note for the remaining $22.4 million.

“The promissory note bears interest payable in quarterly installments beginning July 1, 2019, continuing through its maturity on June 30, 2021, and includes a pre-payment feature,” Dallas Morning News parent company A.H. Belo said in an announcement. “Taking into consideration the interest on the note and the elimination of carrying costs for the Company, the total realizable value of the transaction is approximately $31.6 million over two years.”

The sale was structured as a sign-and-close transaction, the company said.

“We are very pleased to conclude the sale process related to the 508 Young Street campus, and consider Charter DMN Holdings to be an outstanding owner and future developer of this important site that was the Company’s home for almost 60 years,” Robert W. Decherd, A. H. Belo’s Chief Executive Officer, said in the announcement.

No word yet on what Washburne intends to do with the building, although he told the Dallas Morning News that he valued the George Dahl building (he owns four structures designed by the architect), and would work it into any plans, which may include a hotel, apartments, and working space.

Last month, one institutional investor in A.H. Belo signaled its discontent with the decisions the company has made with a letter filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission after a dismal 2018 fourth quarter and continued losses in the first quarter of 2019.