Microsoft To Buy Safeco Office Campus

January 23, 2006

Microsoft Corp. has agreed to pay $209.5 million for the Redmond, Wash., office campus of Safeco Corp., the insurance company said in a regulatory filing Wednesday.

The terms of the deal give Microsoft, Safeco’s neighbor in the Seattle suburb, 30 days to back out. Seattle-based Safeco also can end the deal if plans to expand its offices in Seattle don’t work out as intended.

In addition, Safeco said in the filing that it would lease back some of the property for up to three years, while it completes an effort to consolidate its offices in Seattle.

The sale is expected to close in late 2006, Safeco said. It does not include a Safeco data center in Redmond.

Safeco said it would take a pretax gain of approximately $29 million to account for the sale.

In a statement, Microsoft confirmed the sale and said it was “consistent with Microsoft’s long-standing interest in preserving future growth options in the Redmond-Overlake area.”

More than 30,000 of Microsoft’s 63,564 workers were in the Puget Sound area, according to the company’s latest figures.

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