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Equity Office Daily Brief: January 9, 2017

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Daily Brief

January 09, 2017

  EquilityOffice

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Snapchat's parent company is expanding into 300,000 square feet of Santa Monica office space

Los Angeles Times

 

The company behind popular mobile chat app Snapchat has decided to take a large amount of office space near Santa Monica Airport as it continues to expand rapidly. Snap Inc. has leased about 300,000 square feet at Santa Monica Business Park, according to Westside...

 


Pasadena Development Site Sells for $16.6 Million

Los Angeles Business Journal

 

Pasadena has again proved itself a prime target for multifamily developers. A 1.27-acre site on South Lake Avenue near Caltech sold last month for $16.55 million, said listing broker Laurie Lustig-Bower, an executive vice president at CBRE, who fielded offers from...

 


How One Developer Found In-Fill Opportunity

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

With little land available in the San Fernando Valley for new industrial buildings and logistics tenants hungry for new space, even 15 acres of unstable soil looked good to developer Xebec Realty Partners. The Seal Beach company bought the empty lot in...

 



BLOG & ONLINE NEWS

 

Redevelopment Site Along Pasadena's South Lake Ave Goes for $16.5 Mil

RENTV.com

 

An unidentified Chinese investor paid $16.55 mil for a 1.27-acre mixed-use development site in Pasadena. From what we’re told, the deal garnered 19 offers. The property, located at 141 South Lake Ave, currently holds a 22.5k sf office and retail building and...

 


Middle Market Digest: This Week In Southwest

GlobeSt.com

 

This week in the Southwest region, the year is off to a great start. Several deals in Southern California markets, as well as several financing deals that have closed in the first week of the year. Additionally, some research reports are...

 


Caruso Takes Brand In New Direction

GlobeSt.com

 

Caruso Affiliated is now Caruso. The landmark Los Angeles real estate developer is changing its branding to reflect the firm’s evolution and commitment to focus on hospitality. The new name comes with a new logo modeled after company founder and CEO Rick Caruso’s...

 


Park Assist Opens Los Angeles Office

Parking Network

 

Park Assist has offices in Northern California in San Francisco, as well. The Los Angeles office will be in Silicon Beach, the growing epicenter of technology and innovation. Park Assist will be directly across from Facebook’s newest campus which is currently under...

 

FULL TEXT


Snapchat's parent company is expanding into 300,000 square feet of Santa Monica office space

Los Angeles Times

 

The company behind popular mobile chat app Snapchat has decided to take a large amount of office space near Santa Monica Airport as it continues to expand rapidly.

Snap Inc. has leased about 300,000 square feet at Santa Monica Business Park, according to Westside real estate experts who know about the agreement but aren’t authorized to speak publicly.

The business park is on Ocean Park Boulevard at Centinela Avenue and is home to the headquarters of video game maker Activision Blizzard and offices of online radio service Pandora and direct marketing company Guthy Renker. 

Snap has the option to lease an additional 100,000 square feet there.  

Financial terms of the lease were not available, but landlord Blackstone is asking for $4.65 to $4.95 per square foot a month in rent at the park, according to real estate data provider Costar Group. 

The deal, possibly the largest real estate move yet by the company, comes after Snap signed a six-year lease in September to take over 79,000 square feet of office and hangar space at Santa Monica Airport.

The Santa Monica leases add to Snap’s unusual Los Angeles real estate portfolio, which comprises a web of owned and leased properties across the Westside. It’s anchored by its headquarters on Market Street, where Chief Executive Evan Spiegel has his office. Snap occupies about 95,000 square feet across Venice, according to CoStar.

Snap uses shuttles to ferry employees between offices and parking lots and gives employees vouchers to use at local eateries. It’s secretive about many locations, with little to no signage on the facades.

The company ballooned to more than 1,500 employees, mostly in Los Angeles, at the end of 2016 and has more than 100 job openings, including for chefs and security guards.

Much of the expansion stems from Snap’s increasing ambitions.

The company continues to develop new features for chatting with friends. But it’s also gathering user-shot images to produce news stories from them. And it’s partnering with major TV studios to develop shows for airing on Snapchat.

Last year, Snap released Spectacles — sunglasses with a video camera integrated on the hinge. The device is just the start of the company’s hardware development plans, investors have said.

The nearly 6-year-old company’s giant financial pipeline has kept it fueled.

Snap has raised nearly $3 billion from private equity investors and could double that haul by selling some shares publicly in the coming months. It has also generated about $400 million in revenue from selling ads that appear inside its app.

-Roger Vincent

Pasadena Development Site Sells for $16.6 Million

Los Angeles Business Journal

 

Pasadena has again proved itself a prime target for multifamily developers. A 1.27-acre site on South Lake Avenue near Caltech sold last month for $16.55 million, said listing broker Laurie Lustig-Bower, an executive vice president at CBRE, who fielded offers from nearly 20 prospective buyers over just a couple of months.

Public records show the buyer is James Li, through a limited liability company based in San Gabriel. He was represented by Roobik Ovanesian of Cranbrook Realty Corp.

The site encompasses a 22,500-square-foot retail and office building, which is about 94 percent leased, and a surface parking lot. That empty lot is what made the site particularly attractive.

Under Pasadena’s planning codes, it is possible to build 92 residential units over retail space in the area. However, the city is in the midst of updating its local planning codes, according to Lustig-Bower, and seems poised to possibly allow up to 146 units, in line with its general plan for the whole city.

That potential for greater density - along with the unusually fierce competition from highly qualified buyers - drove the asking price up from the low teens, Lustig-Bower said. The bidders came from various backgrounds, but the strongest competition in the final group came from Asian investors, mostly from China.

Pasadena was a big part of the pull, Lustig-Bower said, given that its apartment occupancy rate is at 98 percent. The rents in the city are also among the highest in greater Los Angeles, according to Apartmentlist.com, with the median rate for a one-bedroom unit at $2100. That reflected a 4.2 percent growth over the past year.

“What is interesting to see firsthand is when you’ve got a desirable location, the demand is night and day, from when something is in a just-okay location,” said Lustig-Bower. “You can see it exponentially in the number of offers that you get.”

-Daina Beth Solomon

How One Developer Found In-Fill Opportunity

San Fernando Valley Business Journal

 

With little land available in the San Fernando Valley for new industrial buildings and logistics tenants hungry for new space, even 15 acres of unstable soil looked good to developer Xebec Realty Partners.

The Seal Beach company bought the empty lot in Sun Valley despite the fact that a former gravel mining operation left behind deep pockets of silt, making it unbuildable. The city of Los Angeles agreed, and had labeled the property as having “undocumented fill,” which meant buildings constructed there faced possible foundation issues.

But Xebec gambled on the site’s potential because the 5 freeway and dense population centers are minutes away, and it matched with the developer’s new focus on building large warehouses for e-commerce tenants. Being in locations with quick access to consumers soon after product orders are placed – a distribution strategy called “last-mile” delivery – is crucial for e-commerce businesses and they increasingly need distribution facilities near major highways in mass markets.

Two years and $58 million since the purchase, the once-shaky ground has been stabilized with a dense underground network of reinforcing rebar and concrete piles and an ultra-thick concrete and steel slab. Above, a 255,500-square-foot warehouse – the larger of two buildings planned for the site – is slowly materializing with a tenant already in place.

Gretchen Kendrick, Xebec’s chief operating officer, said the company has been hunting aggressively for land that fits its new focus – the infill-last-mile market – and so bought the property despite the significant risks.

“Xebec is just starting that strategy because the sites are hard to find,” Kendrick said. “E-commerce has changed the landscape for retail, but also for the industrial market.”

Solid ground?

The developer faced multiple potential roadblocks with the purchase of 11063 Pendleton St., so it partnered with Barings Real Estate Advisers, the global asset management firm Barings’ investment advisory arm, to share the financial costs.

First, the builder needed to stabilize the soil under what would eventually be a total 352,500 square feet of logistics space named the Sun Valley Business Center. The project is scheduled for completion this summer.

Xebec hired Morris-Shea Bridge Co. of Irondale, Ala. to drill a vast network of concrete and rebar vertical piles into the ground. The piles, 1 to 2 feet in diameter, form foundational support for sites such as chemical, manufacturing and power plants, steel mills, high-rise buildings and refineries.

The piles can penetrate deep – about half of the 1,650 piles at Xebec’s site are 110 feet underground. They are also expensive – some of the piles cost $4,500 each, while the average was about $3,000.The drilling process is also quieter than traditional pile drivers because Morris-Shea uses a special rotating auger that screws the piles down into the underlying stable soil, and more effective because the auger laterally displaces the dirt as it compresses around the drill. The piles contain freshly poured concrete reinforced with rebar and extra steel, which are left behind once the tool is pulled up and out of the soil. Xebec’s property work took about four months.

The company also firmed up the two buildings’ underlying pad using a concrete and rebar slab 18 inches thick, compared to typical 8-inch thick pads, said Greg Hook, head of construction for Xebec’s internal contractor, Xebec Building Co. The foundational work added $30 a square foot to the cost of the building, Hook and Kendrick said.

“What’s so unique about this is the added cost of the piles and the 18 inches of rebar,” Kendrick said. “That is not normal.”

Even preparing for the foundational work was risky and costly. Xebec had to hire a geotechnical engineer and structural engineer to supply details of how many piles to dig, how far underground to go and where to drill, which opened the door for possible mistakes, Hook said.

“There was a question if we guessed rightly on the necessary depth,” Hook explained. “We made only eight (test) borings and didn’t know what we were going to find.”

But the alternatives would have brought their own problems.

Using a typical pile driver to install piles into the ground would have been extremely noisy with lots of vibrations coming off the equipment. With several companies surrounding the site, Kendrick said that method “would have been a disaster.”

A second option – grading the entire site down to more stable soil – would have taken twice as long, Kendrick added, and would have required a second plot of land nearly the same size to store the soil – a luxury the company didn’t have.

Fortunately, Morris-Shea was well-known to L.A. city officials because the company has worked in Marina del Rey, Kendrick said. That familiarity helped Xebec’s project receive approval, she added.

Higher lease rates

John DeGrinis, senior executive vice president with brokerage Colliers International in Irvine, negotiated the lease on behalf of the building’s tenant, OnTrac, a regional overnight package delivery service based in Chandler, Ariz.

With OnTrac, Xebec got the type of tenant it targeted, with customers including Amazon.com Inc. in Seattle and N.Y.-based meal-kit delivery service Blue Apron Inc., DeGrinis said. The distributor leased the 255,500-square-foot building in September.OnTrac focuses on the quick delivery times that e-commerce demands for customers in California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Colorado and Idaho. It leases 60,000 square feet in Oxnard and the same amount elsewhere in Sun Valley, which it will probably give up once the larger facility becomes operational, DeGrinis said.

“They were in pain at that location and needed more space,” DeGrinis said. “We looked at tons of alternatives over the last two years in anticipation of solving that problem. They knew there were very little choices to solve and satisfy their requirements.”

OnTrac considered alternatives in Valencia and Santa Clarita and even as far north as Tejon Ranch, DeGrinis said, but they were too far from the Valley, which is in the middle of OnTrac’s market.

Xebec’s building is considered state-of-the-art for e-commerce, with 32-foot clear height ceilings and 35 cross dock truck-loading doors on opposite sides of the building to allow fast and efficient transfer of packages coming in from bulk warehouses and going out on delivery vans.

The facility also has 195 feet between the dock doors to the property’s edge so that semi-tractor trailers can easily get in and out of the property.

“That’s extremely rare out here – you’ll (normally) see less than 100 feet of maneuvering room,” DeGrinis said.

OnTrac is paying close to the 89 cents a square foot that Xebec wanted, he added. By comparison, the average industrial lease in the east San Fernando Valley had a rate of 76 cents in the most recent quarter, according to Colliers’ data. DeGrinis said 10-year-old buildings are getting close to 80 cents a square foot in this ultra-tight market.

The second building in the Sun Valley Business Center will have 97,000 square feet and is not leased yet. Xebec is looking for 96 cents a square foot, DeGrinis said.

Kendrick said many developers wouldn’t have risked buying the property, but it has penciled out financially for Xebec.

“The market was telling us where rental rates were going,” she said.

-Carol Lawrence

Redevelopment Site Along Pasadena's South Lake Ave Goes for $16.5 Mil

RENTV.com

 

An unidentified Chinese investor paid $16.55 mil for a 1.27-acre mixed-use development site in Pasadena. From what we’re told, the deal garnered 19 offers. The property, located at 141 South Lake Ave, currently holds a 22.5k sf office and retail building and an adjacent surface parking lot. Under Pasadena’s New General Plan, the site would potentially allow for up to 146 residential units and about 6.5k sf of retail space. Currently, the existing structure is 94% leased. The site boasts excellent visibility along South Lake Ave, a major business corridor. The property is walking distance to numerous shops and amenities along retail laden South Lake Ave, and is in proximity to about 3 msf of Class A office space. Pasadena, the second-largest city in Los Angeles County, has one of the strongest residential markets in the area, and positive rent growth is forecasted over the next several years, according to CBRE research. Laurie Lustig-Bower and Kadie Presley Wilson of CBRE’s Multifamily Capital Markets team in Los Angeles represented the seller in the transaction. 

-Staff

Middle Market Digest: This Week In Southwest

GlobeSt.com

 

This week in the Southwest region, the year is off to a great start. Several deals in Southern California markets, as well as several financing deals that have closed in the first week of the year. Additionally, some research reports are showing a strong end to the year in some secondary markets, like Las Vegas. Check out all of the highlights from the week below.

BY THE NUMBERS

LAS VEGAS—The Las Vegas market ended 2016 on a high note. According to a report published byXceligent and theCommercial Alliance Las Vegasmore than 2.4 million square feet of local retail space was leased throughout 2016. Areas around the Galleria at Sunset mall in Henderson and in the southwest part of Las Vegas have been in especially high demand, as reflected by their below-market average vacancy rates of 5.2 and 6.2%, respectively. Year-over-year vacancy rates declining from 8.8 to 8.2%.

(SOURCE: Xceligent and the Commercial Alliance Las Vegas)

NEW & NOTABLE

PHOENIX—Kidder Matthews has expanded its healthcare team in Phoenix. Michael Dupuy joins the firm at SVP,Fletcher Perryjoins the firm as SVP and Rachel Thompson joins as VP.

PHOENIX—Jesse Blum has been promoted to senior associate at CBREin the Tucson office. Blum specializes in utilizing market research and database implementation to create proprietary, market-specific knowledge. These strategies are designed to solve regional and national location needs and create local competitive advantages. Blum joined CBRE in 2013 and has become a rising leader and valuable asset to the Tucson office.

DEALTRACKER

SAN DIEGO—CBRE Group has arranged the sale ofScripps Mesa Retail Center, located at 9801-9841 Mira Mesa Boulevard for $11 million betweenHendricks Commercial Properties, a Wisconsin-based investor, and the locally based buyerShah Family Trust. Scripps Mesa Retail Center is approximately 25,721 square feet and was recently renovated in 2015 at a cost of $1.7 million. The center has 18 tenants and recently leased the premises to 100% occupancy. CBRE retail experts Reg Kobzi, Joel Wilson, and Michael sonrepresented both sides of the transaction.THOUSAND OAKS, CA—Oak Park Shopping Center has traded hands between New Oak Park and a private local investor for approximately $28.28 million. The 74,300-square-foot center is currently 98% occupied. Tenants includeUPS, Goodwill, a national coffee chain and other daily-needs retailers. CBRE’sAlex Kozakov, Patrick Wade and CBRE’S local market experts Larry Tanjiand Scott Siegelrepresented the seller, while Paley Commercial Real Estate represented the buyer.

LOS ANGELES—Walker & Dunlop SVP Mark Plenge has structured a $15 million refinance loan with Freddie Mac for The Harvey, an early 1920s vintage, mid-rise multifamily building in Los Angeles, California. The rent-controlled property qualified as 100% “affordable” by Freddie Mac’s metrics, which provides cost-effective rents for moderate- and low-income tenants in this high cost area. Walker & Dunlop could provide aggressive financing in the form of overall loan proceeds and a lower rate.  The loan has a seven-year, adjustable-rate mortgage with two years of interest-only payments and a 30-year amortization schedule.  In the first year of ownership, the client made interior renovations and exterior restorations, which enabled the loan to recapitalize over 90% of the owner’s basis in the property. Last month, the mayor of Los Angeles publicly recognized the property’s sponsors for their proactive and thorough renovations to another one of their rent-controlled assets in nearby Echo Park.ORANGE COUNTY, CA—Berkeley Partners has secured a $10.3 million acquisition loan for the Yorba Linda Business Park, a four-building flex industrial park totaling 115,760 square feet in Yorba Linda, California. HFFplaced the 10-year, non-recourse loan with Michael McCool at Chase Commercial Mortgage Lending. The loan will have a fixed-rate for the first five years before converting to a floating-rate loan for the remaining five years.  Loan proceeds were used to pay off a line of credit that was used to acquire the property 60 days before the loan closed.

PHOENIX—The Opus Group has acquired a mixed-use development in Tempe, AZ, for $15.2 million. The 115,325-square-foot development site, yet to be named, will include two high-rise apartment towers in Phase I. The 20-story and 12-story towers will have a total of 407 apartment units and more than 31,000 square feet of space for retail and restaurants that will front University Drive. Phase I project costs will total $160 million. Construction on the two high-rise apartment towers is underway on the former downtown Tempe parking lot. The apartments are scheduled to open to renters in the summer of 2018. The second phase of the mixed-use project and land sale is being designed to include a hotel that will be developed by a separate group on the remaining 25,000-square-foot corner parcel.Cushman & Wakefield team ofBrent Moser, Mike Sutton and Brooks Griffithrepresented the seller in the deal.

BUILDING BLOCKS

LA JOLLA, CA—The University of California, San Diego awarded the second phase of construction on UC San Diego Nuevo West, part of the East Campus student housing program to the design-build team of Hensel Phelps | Mithun. The $142 million project is 442,000-square-foot Graduate Student Housing project that will house more than 880 beds and related amenity spaces in two main buildings. The design-build collaboration between Hensel Phelps and Mithun builds on the team’s collaboration with the adjacent Mesa Nueva Graduate and Professional Student Housing project to create a new graduate research community. The team’s collaborations also include the recently completed Mesa Court Towers for the University of California, Irvine (UCI).

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Caruso Takes Brand In New Direction

GlobeSt.com

 

Caruso Affiliated is now Caruso. The landmark Los Angeles real estate developer is changing its branding to reflect the firm’s evolution and commitment to focus on hospitality. The new name comes with a new logo modeled after company founder and CEO Rick Caruso’s signature. To find out  more about the new branding and what this means for the company—including what we can expect in 2017—we sat down with Judy Johnson, CMO of Caruso, for an exclusive interview.

GlobeSt.com: Tell me about the new brand identity for the firm.

Judy Johnson: We wanted to refresh and contemporize our identity to reflect our priorities and core values. We worked closely with the internationally recognized branding and design firm Pentagram on our new brand architecture, brand strategy, brand narrative and identity project. This strategic body of work looked at our competition, our company, and our various audiences important to our company’s success, and developed a new approach to how we visualize and speak about our company and its differentiated approach to development and retail.

GlobeSt.com: What was the impetus for the shift in brand identity?

Johnson: We’ve been in this business for almost 30 years, and we have evolved and grown tremendously in recent years, bringing the Caruso brand into mixed-use office space, residences, and soon, hotels. We have always been in the hospitality business, and this new identity humanizes our brand and brings to life the unparalleled care and service we have been providing to our guests from the very beginning.  We wanted a way to create greater brand and collection awareness, create brand elasticity to move into new markets and products, and to create a long tail to move our guests around to these new markets and products.  Now was the time with five projects on the slate from 2016-2018.

GlobeSt.com: Can we expect to see any changes in the company, either in terms of strategy or focus, as a result of the new branding?

Johnson: We are always committed to building beloved spaces filled with great hospitality. We love to delight people and be ever changing in terms of our curated offering of restaurants, stores, pop-ups and entertainment/events.  We will continue to look for great opportunities to provide best-in-class service and experiences to our guests and tenants at every property and in our new endeavors.

GlobeSt.com: Any other new plans on the horizon for 2017?

Johnson: We have an exciting year ahead; we are currently investing more than $1 billion in new projects and lines of business, including a five-star beach-front resort in Montecito; a mixed-use luxury high-rise residential tower in the heart of Los Angeles; and mixed-use dining, entertainment and retail collection in Pacific Palisades.  We’re pleased to bring these projects to life for the local communities they serve and guests from around the world.

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Park Assist Opens Los Angeles Office

Parking Network

 

Park Assist has offices in Northern California in San Francisco, as well. The Los Angeles office will be in Silicon Beach, the growing epicenter of technology and innovation. Park Assist will be directly across from Facebook’s newest campus which is currently under construction. The West Los Angeles space is in a prime location near Los Angeles Airport (LAX) and near our clients such as, Santa Monica Place, Century City, Glendale Galleria, Brookfield’s Fig At 7th and Culver City.

“We are delighted to strengthen our operations in the Los Angeles region to serve our growing client list and partners in Southern California,” said Gary Neff, CEO of Park Assist.

The new office opened in January and is located at 12777 West Jefferson Blvd, suite 3032. Park Assist is headquartered in New York City and has offices in Amsterdam, Cheshire, Dubai, Fort Lauderdale, London, Panama City, San Francisco, Santiago and Sydney. The Los Angeles location represents the fourth regional U.S. office in Park Assist’s North American support network.

-Staff

Daily Brief January 09, 2017 unsubscribe

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