Lease Beat

Snapchat Snaps Up Space at Former Times Building

229 West 43rd Street

Snapchat, the preferred photo-sharing app of teens that was valued earlier this year at $10 billion, has signed a lease at 229 West 43rd Street, best known as the old New York Times building.

According to Crain’s New York Business, the technology company is taking the entire top two floors, the 15th and 16th, which amounts to 27,000 square feet. Read More

Lease Beat

Tech Firm Relocates to Former NYT Building

229 West 43rd Street.

PubMatic is relocating to the former New York Times Building at 229 West 43rd Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues.

The technology platform, which powers the programmatic advertising strategy of leading publishers and premium brands, signed a seven-year, 18,911-square-foot office lease on the seventh floor in the 16-story 480,000-square-foot tower, now known as 229W43, according to an announcement from Transwestern. PubMatic outgrew its nearby space at 220 West 42nd Street. Read More

Lease Beat

10gen Expands at Former NYT Building

BX_229W43_Aerial_Night_1014111

10gen is expanding its presence at the former New York Times Building with an additional 20,432 square feet across the 5th floor, bringing its total occupancy to nearly 50,000 square feet.

The deal comes seven months after the growing software and database company signed a six-year, 29,391-square-foot lease with contiguous expansion options in December 2012, which includes Read More

Market Report

Class B Rents in Midtown South Surpass Midtown

770 Broadway

Demand for space in Midtown South, where the majority of properties are Class B, drove effective rent for buildings in that classification beyond Midtown in the second quarter, according to data from CompStak. Midtown South Class B effective rent was $46.67 per square foot for the quarter, while Midtown registered effective rent for Class B of $44.17.

Though availability is tight in the city’s hottest submarket, those companies that are able to find space are driving up rents–and there is no end in sight. Read More

Market Report

Leasing Activity Up in May as Tech Firms Dominate

770 Broadway

Manhattan leasing activity was up 24 percent year-over-year in May to 2.08 million square feet, up from 1.68 million square feet in May 2012, according to CBRE’s latest Manhattan Marketview Snapshot. The three largest new leases were from tech firms, including Facebook’s new lease at 770 Broadway, the report noted.

Tech leasing was led by Yahoo!, which snapped up 176,201 square feet at 229 West 43rd Street, the former headquarters of The New York Times. Yahoo!’s lease led the Midtown market, where leasing was up 26 percent over the five-year average of 1.17 million square feet. Read More

Scouting Report

Yahoo!, Facebook, Warner Music and Amazon Reportedly Touring 229 West 43rd Street, Former NY Times HQ

Former AIG Head Reportedly Considering New York Times Takeover

When The Commercial Observer profiled 229 West 43rd Street (the former New York Times Building) earlier this month, leasing agent Brian Waterman of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank said “a bunch of larger tenants [were] hanging around the rim.” Mr. Waterman declined to name names, but unconfirmed reports suggest interest among some big, usual suspects from the tech and media sectors. Read More

Midtown 2013

New Tricks for Old “Times” Building

Former AIG Head Reportedly Considering New York Times Takeover

When the information database developer 10Gen was on the hunt for office space last year, it initially focused its search around Midtown South’s tech-industry hotbed. In December, the company inked a deal for 29,400 square feet at 229 West 43rd Street, the old New York Times headquarters.

The deal suggested a shift among youthful companies that for years had sought nontraditional loft-like offices in and around the Flatiron District, Union Square and Soho.

A post-recession spike in activity and rents was welcome, but even more encouraging was the fact that cutting-edge tech and new media firms were generating significant activity in the prime neighborhood so often associated with starchy law firms and corporate users. The fact that the former headquarters of an archetypal old media giant was drawing new media (and tech) blood was an intriguing development. Read More

Lease Beat

Al Jazeera Reportedly Turned Off By ‘Too Many Columns’ at Former Times Building

Interior at 229 W. 43rd St. boasts lofty feel but perhaps too many columns

Bad breath.  Body odor.  Too many columns.

Al Jazeera reportedly eyed the former New York Times building at 229 West 43rd Street as a potential headquarters for its expanding U.S. operations, but the news agency may have been turned off when it saw “too many columns,” The Wall Street Journal reported today.

Though the building has drawn interest from numerous tech and creative firms, which place great value on lofty, open workspaces, even a single column can pose a big problem for large TV studios.

“Most studios require large areas of column free space, in addition to high ceilings,” Jason Schwartzenberg, a corporate managing director at Studley who focuses on creative tenants, told The Commercial Observer. Read More

Power Broker

The Postgraduate: Newmark Grubb Knight Frank’s Brian Waterman

Photo: Peter Lettre/NY Observer

Brian Waterman’s 27 years at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank sprang from a 90-second interview with NGKF Chief Executive Officer Barry Gosin in 1986.

Mr. Waterman, now a vice chairman at NGKF, was fresh out of college and considering a career in law. His mentor, Saul Katz, Sterling Equities’ co-founder and president, shot from the hip and said there were already enough lawyers in the world, and that Mr. Waterman should look into real estate, the field that had minted Mr. Katz’s fortune.

Mr. Katz put Messrs. Waterman and Gosin in touch.

Not quite two minutes into the job interview, Mr. Gosin told Mr. Waterman he was hired, and to immediately start canvassing. “It was my first and only job interview,” Mr. Waterman said. Read More

The Year in Review

2012: The Year Tech Invaded NYC Real Estate

year tech broke

This past February, 10Gen, developer of the computer system database MongoDB, was in search of new office space, specifically in tech- and media-rich Midtown South.

The company needed a large open layout for its workers, with an option for more space to allow the firm to grow—plus an option to terminate. Unfortunately, the ultra-tight market Read More

Marketwatch

The Heart of Manhattan: Why Midtown is Starting to Make Sense, Again

Midtown Manhattan

Midtown is starting to matter again.

At least that’s the view to take from commercial real estate deals like Japanese financial firm Nomura Holding’s $60-per-square-foot, 20-year lease for a plush 47-story headquarters at 825 Eighth Avenue.

The arrival of a Japanese multinational at the Worldwide Plaza property embodies the roller-coaster ride of the Midtown office market over the past five years. It was bought by Harry Macklowe for $1.7 billion in 2007, only to be sold at a 60 percent discount two years later in a fire sale that saw George Comfort & Sons snatch it up for $600 million in 2009 when the building was half vacant. Read More