U.S. Markets closed

Cousins Properties, Tier REIT to merge creating an office REIT with combined market cap of $5.9 billion

Tomi Kilgore

Cousins Properties Inc. and Tier REIT Inc. announced Monday a merger deal, creating a office real estate investment trust with a combined equity market capitalization of about $5.9 billion. The stocks are still inactive in premarket trade. Under terms of the 100% stock deal, Cousins will exchange 2.98 shares of newly issued shares for each Tier stock outstanding. Based on Friday's closing prices, that values Tier shares at $29.44 each, a 15.6% premium. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of 2019, at which time Cousins shareholders will own 72% of the combined company and Tier stockholders will own 28%. The companies expect annual net savings of $18.5 million after closing. "The company will own an unmatched portfolio of trophy office properties in the premier submarkets of Atlanta, Austin, Charlotte, Dallas, Phoenix and Tampa," said Cousins Chief Executive Colin Connolly. Cousins's stock has rallied 18.9% over the past 12 months and Tier shares have soared 42.0%, while the SPDR Real Estate Select Sector ETF has climbed 19.1% and the S&P 500 has gained 8.2%.