Affiliate of billionaire shipping family pays $38M to Crown Acquisitions for FiDi retail

144 Fulton Street (Credit - Google)

144 Fulton Street (Credit - Google)

An affiliate of the billionaire Niarchos shipping family through the entity 144 Fulton Owner LLC paid $38 million to Crown Acquisitions through the entity Crown 144 Fulton LLC for the retail building (K2) at 144 Fulton Street in Financial District, Manhattan.
The purchase comes four months after the Niarchos family sold a long-held small Midtown building for $40 million to Vornado Realty Trust.
The Fulton Street deal closed on October 20, 2023 and was recorded on October 25, 2023. The property has 8,071 square feet of built space and 21,944 square feet of additional air rights for a total buildable of 30,020 square feet according to a PincusCo analysis of city data. The sale price per built square foot is $4,708 and the price per buildable square foot is $1,265 per the PincusCo analysis. (The price per square foot analysis is the transaction price divided by square feet as reported in public records and assumes no air rights have been sold.)
The Chera family’s Crown Acquisitions bought the property on July 27, 2015, for $25 million.

The signatory for Crown Acquisitions was Brittany Bragg. The signatory for the Niarchos family was Claus Zellner. The contract date was September 22, 2023. The Real Deal reported in June 2023 that Crown Acquisitions listed the property for sale. The building is occupied by a Chick-fil-A. Claus Zellner is affiliated with the Stavros Niarchos Foundation  which has an office in New York.  The Niarchos family sold 39 East 51st Street, which it has owned for decades, to Vornado Realty Trust in June 2023 as part of a supertall development project.

Prior sales and revenue

Prior to this transaction, PincusCo has no record that the buyer Niarchos family had purchased any other properties and has no record it sold any properties over the past 24 months.
The seller Crown Acquisitions purchased four properties in four transactions for a total of $14.1 million and sold one property in one transaction for a total of $10.3 million over the same time period.

The property

The retail building in Financial District has 8,071 square feet of built space and 21,944 square feet of additional air rights for a total buildable of 30,020 square feet according to a PincusCo analysis of city data. The parcel has frontage of 28 feet and is 107 feet deep with a total lot size of 3,002 square feet. The lot is irregular. The zoning is C5-5 which allows for up to 15 times floor area ratio (FAR) for commercial and up to 10 times FAR for residential with inclusionary housing. The city-designated market value for the property in 2022 is $6.4 million.

Violations and lawsuits

There were no lawsuits or bankruptcies filed against the property for the past 24 months. In addition, according to city public data, the property has received two DOB violations and $425 in OATH penalties in the last year.


There are no active new building construction projects or major alteration projects with initial costs more than $1 million on this tax lot.

The neighborhood

In Financial District, The majority, or 74 percent of the 79.9 million square feet of commercial built space are office buildings, with elevator buildings next occupying 15 percent of the space. In sales, Financial District has the 5th highest sale turnover among other neighborhoods in the city with $2.6 billion in sales volume in the last two years. For development, Financial District is the 3rd most active neighborhood among other neighborhoods. It had 10.8 million square feet of commercial and multi-family construction under development in the last two years, which represents 14 percent of the neighborhood’s built space.

The block

On this tax block, PincusCo has identified the owners of one of the nine commercial properties representing 12,108 square feet of the 330,236 square feet. The identified owner is Maverick Management.
On the tax block, there was one new building construction project filed totaling 119,758 square feet. It is a 119,758 square-foot business (B) building submitted by Hidrock Properties and filed by Eddie Hidary with plans filed April 4, 2019 and it has not been permitted yet.

The majority, or 50 percent of the 330,236 square feet of built space are specialty buildings, with hotel buildings next occupying 34 percent of the space.

The seller

The PincusCo database currently indicates that Crown Acquisitions owned at least six commercial properties with 107 residential units in New York City with 641,036 square feet and a city-determined market value of $573.3 million. (Market value is typically about 50% of actual value.) The portfolio has $11.5 million in debt, borrowed from East West Bank. Within the portfolio, the bulk, or 70 percent of the 641,036 square feet of built space are office properties, with D4 properties next occupying 22 percent of the space. The bulk, or 98 percent of the built space, is in Manhattan, with Brooklyn next at 2 percent of the space.

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