Cybex explores sale of its headquarters

Eyeing another way to cut operating costs, Cybex International has put up its headquarters and land in Medway, Mass., for sale or sale/leaseback, according to a copy of a real estate brochure obtained by SNEWS.
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Eyeing another way to cut operating costs, Cybex International has put up its headquarters and land in Medway, Mass., for sale or sale/leaseback, according to a copy of a real estate brochure obtained by SNEWS.

The 118,000-square-foot office building and parking lots cover only half of the approximately 24-acre property with the remaining acreage now undeveloped with forest, meadows and marshes. Cybex owns the land, having bought it in the early '90s, CFO Art Hicks told SNEWS.

"It's just exploratory," Hicks said about the offering through Boston-based Meredith & Grew. "We don't have to take action. If we get a good offer, we'll sell it; if we don't, we won't.

"The goal is to reduce debt and our operating costs," he added. "It's a good property with a high appraised value."

The company declined to reveal the value or asking price, but sources say it could go for at least $8 million to $10 million. Hicks declined to say if there have been any offers or for how much, but did say there has been "plenty of interest" and that no offers have been accepted in the three months it's been listed.

The real estate brochure says the company would either sell the building straight-out and move to another location, or it would work out a leaseback from a new owner. Roland Murray, Cybex vice president of sales and marketing, said the company already had tentatively picked out several other possible sites for its headquarters that are within five miles of the current offices. If the company moved, the manufacturing of its cardio equipment now done on site would also move. The company's strength line and the ArcTrainer are manufactured at its Minnesota plant.

The original building, according to the brochure, was built in 1983. It is located directly off Interstate 495 and Route 109, in a budding industrial corridor to the southwest of Boston.

"If it gets a good price," Hicks said, "it might be able to help us financially."

In June, Cybex refinanced its bank facility with CIT Business Credit and Hilco Capital LP, which was to provide a $30 million, three-year senior financing facility to replace the one carried by FleetBoston and Wachovia Bank. In addition to CIT and Hilco, Cybex's principal stockholder, UM Holdings, has agreed to provide up to $8 million in subordinated loans and other guarantees, including advances made to date, as part of the refinancing. That would also provide the company (AMEX: CYB) with additional working capital. CEO John Aglialoro, with his wife, Joan Carter, who is vice chair, run UM Holdings, which owns just over 50 percent of the company. UM has also already provided Cybex with nearly $4 million in subordinated loans as of early May, according to financial reports.

To look at the real estate brochure,
click here.

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