Today, CDS International Holdings announced the sale of the Atlantic Crossing property to Edwards Companies.
Here is what chairman of CDS International Holdings Carl DeSantis has to say about the transaction:
As many of you know, I’m a few years past 65.
Our company, CDS International Holdings, remains active in a wide variety of exciting businesses and philanthropic efforts including, but not limited to consumer products, men’s clothing, restaurants, and office buildings. Of course, our breakout national brands Tabanero and Celsius take up much of my efforts lately.
As a lifelong entrepreneur, my passion has always been innovative consumer products that promote healthy lifestyles. While we have been active investors in real estate and big believers in Delray Beach, we are not, and have never been developers; certainly not of large projects that take many years to complete. It’s simply not our forte. We sought a partnership with a strong developer and we chose to work with the Edwards Companies because of their experience in many states with large mixed use projects. It was important to me that they are a family run organization, which we are as well.
I also liked the fact that when we went to Ohio, we heard nothing but compliments on their work and their dealings with people and local governments. That was important to me and my team as well, because we care about our community and have always conducted business in an ethical fashion. It’s been a core value since I started my first venture as a young man in my garage.
As I grow older, I have realized that there is still much I want to accomplish, but only a finite amount of time in which to do so. I have surrounded myself with a team of solid professionals who share my aspirations and entrepreneurial spirit.
We have decided to sell Atlantic Crossing to the Edwards Companies, so that we can focus on these opportunities and new ones that we are vetting on a weekly basis. The sale will allow us to focus on what we do best—and allow the developer to do what he does best. And I am pleased to know that while we are exiting the project, The Edwards Companies will continue their efforts to build the approved site plan.
As a Delray Beach resident, I remain committed to Delray and will remain active in the community for many years to come. Our vision for Atlantic Crossing was designed after careful study of 30 years worth of Delray Beach visioning. Visioning that was led by citizens and implemented by outstanding elected leaders and committed city staff. The legacy of their efforts has created immense value and quality of life. We believe our project met the citizen’s dreams of a mixed-use center that would create jobs, tax base and add long coveted office space so the next generation of entrepreneurs could lead Delray forward.
I still believe in that vision. We strived to play by the rules and we did, to the letter by designing a project that required not one variance, waiver or modification. Not one. In addition, we agreed to 79 conditions and even agreed to a new road as requested in an effort to be good corporate citizens. Some disagree with the plans and we respect that, but we have also heard from many residents and nearby small business owners who support our plan and the city’s long time wishes for the site. It is my hope their voices are heard as clearly in the future.
We wish the Edwards Companies well in bringing the goals of the citizens to life so that downtown Delray can continue to lead the region.