March 20, 2013 / 10:30 AM / 4 years ago

American Realty Capital offers to buy Cole Credit trust

(Reuters) - Real estate investment trust American Realty Capital Properties Inc said it offered to buy unlisted Cole Credit Property Trust III Inc for $5.7 billion in cash and stock to create the largest publicly traded REIT in the net lease sector.

The offer is valued at more than $9 billion including debt, American Realty Capital said in a statement on Wednesday.

Net lease is an agreement where the tenant pays property taxes, building insurance and maintenance in addition to rent. Such properties are usually rented out for commercial purposes to retailers, supermarkets and restaurants.

American Realty Capital asked the trust to call off its planned acquisition of its external adviser, Cole Holdings Corp, saying its offer would provide immediate liquidity to Cole Credit shareholders.

American Realty Capital said it had earlier expressed interest in the company but was surprised not to have received any response.

Cole Credit said earlier this month that it would buy Cole Holdings Corp, a real estate investment manager with over $12 billion assets under management, and pursue a listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

American Realty Capital is offering $12 in cash or 0.80 shares of its own stock for each Cole Credit share.

Cole Credit Property Trust III owns 926 properties with a combined area of nearly 40 million square feet in 47 states and counts Walgreen Co and CVS Caremark Corp among its tenants.

Cole Credit Property Trust II merged with Spirit Realty Capital Inc earlier this year to create a commercial real estate firm with a combined enterprise value of $7.1 billion.

American Realty Capital shares were up 2 percent at $14.20 in light trading before markets opened.

Reporting by Tanya Agrawal in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet Das

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