Costa Mesa-based Facilities Management West Inc. has been picked as the winning bidder to buy the Orange County fairgrounds for $100 million, the state said Wednesday.
The privately held real estate management company appears set to buy the 150-acre site on its own, after a prior deal involving the city of Costa Mesa fell apart a few months ago.
The state said in a release that Facilities Management West would make an initial $20 million payment for the property this year, and pay off the rest in the next 35 years.
With interest, payments will end up exceeding $200 million over the life of the deal, the state said.
The transaction should close by the end of the year.
The state's General Services Department agreed in June to sell the fairgrounds to Costa Mesa for $96 million.
Facilities Management West planned to lease the property back from the city under that plan, which fell apart when state legislation needed to confirm the transaction never came about.
The company originally lost in a state auction in January to Newport Beach-based developer Craig Realty Group’s $56.5 million bid. After the state declined the outlet mall developer’s offer, Facilities Management West came forward with its $96 million offer.
Newport Beach's Fait Family Trust is the key player behind Facilities Management West.
The fairgrounds sale is part of a plan to improve the state’s budget.