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Meriwethe Buys Blanchard Plaza

SEATTLE, May 10, 2004 – Meriwether Partners announced today that an investment group sponsored by the principals of Meriwether Partners LLC and Fred Hines acquired the Blanchard Plaza office building in downtown Seattle. Blanchard Plaza is a 237,000 square foot Class A office building located at 2201 6th Avenue in the Denny Triangle submarket of downtown Seattle.

Blanchard Plaza is home to the Region X offices of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (representing Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington). The DHHS occupies 107,000 square feet (45% of the building) through April 2014 and has been a tenant in the building since 1988. The U.S. Social Security Administration Regional Office of Hearings and Appeals occupies an additional 32,000 square feet (13% of the building) through July 2010.

“This investment provides the opportunity to acquire a high-quality office building at approximately 65% of replacement cost. The Property is 86% leased with 58% of the building leased on a long-term basis to the United States Federal Government,” said Rob MacAulay, principal at Meriwether Partners. “The in-place leases provide solid, predictable cash flow. By leasing the remaining 14% of the Property and by taking advantage of the eventual recovery of rental rates from their current trough levels, the investment is expected to provide long-term income growth and significant capital appreciation.”

Joel Aslanian, principal at Meriwether added, “At the $33 million purchase price, we believe the acquisition of Blanchard Plaza will provide excellent risk-adjusted returns. Given the Property’s quality, location and strong-credit tenancy, the opportunity to own it for 65% of replacement cost represents an outstanding value.”

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Meriwether Partners is a real estate investment firm with offices in Seattle and Portland. We form partnerships to acquire and manage real estate investments on behalf of the Meriwether principals, high-net worth individuals, family offices, and institutions.

Meriwether was founded in 2002 by Joel Aslanian and Robert Briscoe who have worked together since 1998. The company has acquired more than 2 million square feet of commercial real estate at a cost of over $250 million.

The firm’s primary investment focus is in the Seattle and Portland metropolitan areas. Meriwether invests in properties that are well-located with sound physical and economic fundamentals; properties that have the ability to generate attractive levels of distributable cash; and properties to which we can add value by executing recapitalization or repositioning strategies.