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Tuesday, Nov 21, 2017
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Tallest building in Pinellas County in search of a new name

ST. PETERSBURG — The name "Priatek" is gone from Pinellas County's tallest building, perhaps to be replaced by that of a much better-known company new to the Tampa Bay area.

After two years, Priatek founder and CEO Milind Bharvirkar decided not to renew naming rights on the 28-story, 386-foot tall building at 200 Central Avenue in downtown St. Petersburg, Wendy Giffin, a director of the Cushman & Wakefield brokerage, said Monday. The Priatek name came down last month.

"They met all the terms and conditions of the agreement, but I think (Bharvirkar) felt that they got the play and visibility and advertising that came with it," Giffin said. "The deal "The deal he had structured was very expensive."

PREVIOUS COVERAGE:The story behind Priatek, the little company with its name on Pinellas County's tallest building

Priatek, a start-up interactive advertising firm, will remain a tenant in the building along with Bank of Tampa, Raymond James, Merrill Lynch, Trenam Law and the customer support company IQor.

Giffin said talks about naming rights are underway with some existing tenants and other companies downtown as well as with companies that would be new to the region.

"Definitely known names and definitely new jobs," she said, adding that "one, if not two" could sign leases by the end of the year.

Before the Priatek name went up in 2015 , the 28-year-old building with its large clock and once-gleaming cooper roof had been known as the Barnett Bank Tower, Bank of America Tower and One Progress Plaza. In June, it sold for $65.75 million to Tampa's Third Lake Capital, the locally based investment firm of the Wanek family behind the Ashley Furniture brand.

RELATED COVERAGE: Downtown St. Petersburg's tallest tower, Priatek Plaza, has a new owner

Giffin said the Arkansas-based Nelson Architectural Group, which has an office in Tampa, has been hired for the renovation of the building's common areas and space planning for new tenants. The first two floors have been repainted, and the entire building will be pressured washed and fancied up with new landscaping. One of its chief attractions — a customer parking lot — will remain intact in a downtown where the shortage f parking has been a serious problem.

At 386 feet, the building barely edges out the 381-foot Signature Place condo tower several blocks away for its distinction as Pinellas' tallest building. And it will lose the title as soon as the 41-story, 450-foot ONE St. Petersburg condo tower nearby is finished next year.

Contact Susan Taylor Martin at [email protected] or (727) 893-8642. Follow @susanskate

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