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L.A. Landlord EVOQ Properties Explores Possible Sale of Company

EVOQ, Formerly Meruelo Maddux Properties, Hires Eastdil and Houlihan Lokey to Market Company For Sale
February 26, 2014
The company that took over the downtown Los Angeles development sites and buildings of Meruelo Maddux Properties, Inc. after its 2011 bankruptcy announced it is exploring potential strategic options, including a possible sale.

The board of directors of EVOQ Properties, Inc. announced the decision on Wednesday, adding the company will continue to operate during the process. EVOQ, which trades publicly on the OTC exchanges, had about $36.7 million cash at year-end 2013.

EVOQ Properties, formerly Meruelo Maddux, one of the Los Angeles CBD's largest landlords, struggled during the downturn and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September 2009. When Meruelo Maddux emerged from reorganization in 2011, the board appointed 20-year real estate veteran Martin Caverly as CEO, replacing company founder Richard Meruelo. The company changed its name to EVOQ Properties in 2012.

EVOQ has retained Houlihan Lokey and Eastdil Secured as financial advisors. Jeffrey Altman, managing director at Houlihan Lokey, and Stephen Somer, managing director at Eastdil Secured, will lead the review.

The board authorized Houlihan Lokey to "undertake a comprehensive marketing process for a sale of the entire company, including soliciting acquisition proposals from all interested parties." the company said in a statement.

"The EVOQ Board of Directors and management team are committed to maximizing shareholder value," said Martin Caverly, CEO of EVOQ. "Authorizing a marketing of the company for sale demonstrates our commitment to achieving this important objective."

The company said it cannot assure the process will lead to a transaction and doesn't plan to comment unless and until it approves a transaction or otherwise concludes the review.

EVOQ’s portfolio includes more than 2 million square feet and more than 13 total acres of prime development land in downtown LA, anchored by Alameda Square, an office campus and "innovation hub" on 32 acres near the Arts and Fashion districts

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