Uncovering how a university's satellite campus could bring an unprecedented influx to its endowment.

A satellite campus in a prime location

A large university located outside of a major metropolitan area had acquired a large academic building in a mixed-use downtown neighborhood after it absorbed a smaller college. Since the acquisition, the building had been continuously operated as a satellite campus for student instruction and faculty offices.


A significant financial burden

DBI was engaged by the university to assess and optimize their extensive portfolio of owned and leased assets. Upon review of the downtown satellite building, DBI determined that 1) the university did not require so much square footage in that particular location, and 2) the ongoing operating costs were creating a significant financial burden. DBI investigated the value of the land and created several development scenarios that added programmatic value, alleviated the ongoing carry costs, and generated game-changing revenue for the university. The development of these scenarios entailed a detailed review of existing studies and market comps, and identifying and engaging strategic tenants, partners, and programs.

Creating new opportunities through creative scenarios

DBI developed creative programmatic concepts that would realize and expand the university’s vision, pushing the effort further by developing architectural models, budgets, and an exhaustive matrix detailing potential uses, corresponding cash flows, schedules, risks, and benefits. The scenarios we presented to the university ranged from leasing out portions of the building, entering into a joint venture agreement, or pursuing a sale. Through our analysis, DBI and university leadership concluded they were well-positioned to consolidate satellite programming and relocate to a smaller, leased space.


DBI’s analysis was praised for its comprehensiveness and clarity and led to the decision to monetize the asset due to its superb location and the state of the market at the time.


Advancing the university's vision in unprecedented ways

The property was sold for $250 million, creating an unprecedented, game-changing infusion into the endowment. Simultaneously, DBI worked with commercial brokers to identify and negotiate a long-term lease in a prominent building (with significant signage rights) in a heavily trafficked location that has allowed them to grow target academic programs, while significantly boosting their profile and name recognition.

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Please note: While details have been altered to protect the anonymity of our clients, the nature and outcome of each case study remains accurate.