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Commercial Real Estate Kent County Manufacturing & Distribution News

Gillis Gilkerson acquires Milford warehouse

Katie Tabeling
Gillis Gilkerson, NAI Coastal acquires First State Manufacturing in Milford, January 2023

NAI Coastal brokered the sale of a warehouse in Milford, which will add another Kent County property to Gillis Gilkerson’s portfolio. | PHOTO COURTESY OF NAI COASTAL

MILFORD —  Gillis Gilkerson has bought the First State Manufacturing warehouse for $4.8 million, with an eye for subdividing it to up to three tenants in the future.

The warehouse at 301 SE 4th St. in Milford has 68,000 square feet in total floor space, about half of which is still occupied by First State Manufacturing, a textile manufacturing company. That leaves 34,000 square feet for future tenants, and possible renovations to meet their needs.

First State Manufacturing will reportedly continue to lease space out of the building.

George Merritt, of NAI Coastal, the commercial real estate arm of Gillis Gilkerson that brokered the deal for the firm, confirmed the minimum divisibility of the vacant space would be 10,000 square feet. The warehouse already has 12-foot ceilings and drive-in and dock-high doors for other manufacturer and distribution users.

“The group that owns the property is willing to do some more renovations to add more high dock or drive-in doors, or even adding parking and adding a truck loop, for what the prospect may need,” Merritt said. “Warehouse space is becoming more difficult to find, especially if you’re anywhere near U.S. Route 113 and the beach. That corridor is very hot right now.”

Gillis Gilkerson is a construction and development company that operates in Maryland and southern Delaware. The firm and NAI Coastal operate and hold assets in a region that is within a hour drive from Salisbury, Md., where both companies are headquartered.

Chris Gillkerson, a principal with Gillis Gilkerson and NAI Coastal, noted that the property was part of a tax-deferred exchange, and had upside potential.

“As both investors and developers, we look for properties that can be acquired at a fair price, but that also have room for us to add value. In this scenario, our opportunity to add value lies in the lease of the vacant portion of the building,” Gilkerson said in an email.

NAI Coastal is currently marketing 14 properties in Delaware, including the warehouse on 302 SE 4th St., which is its only asset listed in Milford.

“A big portion of our investment portfolio is located in Delaware,” Gilkerson added. “Geographically, Sussex and Kent County properties are central to major interstates leading in all directions. We focus pretty heavily in the industrial sector so this is ideal for manufacturing and distribution users, our target tenants.”

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