WASHINGTON – Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP is pleased to have represented Resort Gaming Group LLC (RGG) and its owner, Andrew B. Donner, in a huge real estate deal announced this week that Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman called “a watershed moment” for the city. The transaction will result in leading online footwear and clothing retailer Zappos.com moving its 1,000-plus employee corporate campus from suburban Henderson, Nevada, to downtown Las Vegas, creating an immediate need for commercial and residential development in an area that is in need of economic revitalization.
In announcing the deal alongside Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, Mayor Goodman said, “Today is a transaction that is going to forever affect the social fabric of our community. The way we think about ourselves and our inner core will be different from this moment forward.”
He continued, “There are certain watershed moments that a city may celebrate and consider while evaluating the historical perspective. This is one of them.”
Under the terms of the deal, RGG will purchase the existing Las Vegas City Hall building and related parking and other amenities, including a television studio, for $25 million and will obtain an option right for the additional campus acreage. RGG will lease the site to Zappos, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Amazon.com, enabling the company to relocate its corporate campus to the site. Zappos has been named for the last two years as a Fortune “Top 100 Company to Work For.”
“We are pleased to have represented RGG in this landmark deal that will shape the future of Las Vegas,” said Wendy L. Fields, a Washington-based partner in Katten’s Real Estate Practice, who, along with partners Rori H. Malech and Benzion Westreich, counseled RGG in the negotiation and structure of the transaction. “The participants in this deal—RGG and Andrew Donner, Zappos and Tony Hsieh, and Mayor Goodman and the City of Las Vegas—are among the most innovative partners with whom we have ever had the good fortune to work, and they are no doubt the reason that were able to get such a complex and unique transaction completed in such short order.”
“The economic uplift that will be created by Zappos’s move to downtown will be significant,” Mr. Donner said. “Zappos’s corporate campus will elevate downtown, its profile, its vibe and its appeal to both locals and tourists alike.”
“At Zappos, our number one priority is our company culture,” said Mr. Hsieh, who has built Zappos into an internationally renowned company, known for its fun and family-type culture with a focus on employee happiness. “Our belief is that if we get the culture right, most of the other stuff—like delivering great customer service and building a long-term enduring brand and business—will be a natural byproduct of our culture. Our proposed future downtown location will be a great urban environment that will help grow the cultures of both Zappos and Las Vegas.”
Katten has one of the most extensive and renowned real estate practices in the United States, with over 100 Real Estate attorneys firm wide. With its London affiliate—Katten Muchin Rosenman Cornish LLP—the practice has developed an international presence with combined experience in the U.S. and European real estate and real estate capital markets, enabling it to provide premier servicing solutions and capabilities on both sides of the Atlantic.