Harbor Associates JV Acquires 119K-SF Lab Conversion in Greater LA

The R&D conversion will serve as the global headquarters for A2 Biotherapeutics

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A joint venture of Harbor Associates and Platform Ventures has acquired a 118,906-square-foot office and research & development building in Los Angeles County, and secured a tenant to a long-term lease ahead of a planned lab conversion.

A2 Biotherapeutics (A2 Bio) — which invented a cell therapy platform for cancer medicines to distinguish between tumor and normal cells — signed an 11-year lease for 76,000 square feet for its new global headquarters at 30601 Agoura Road. The new space will have 70 percent dedicated to lab and R&D, with the remaining 30 percent devoted to collaboration. A2 Bio will move in during the second half of 2023.

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Adler Realty sold the property for $19.3 million. Records show Citizens Bank also provided the new owners a $29.3 million loan on the property.

The two-story multi-tenant building is in the city of Agoura Hills, in the western-most part of the county near Thousand Oaks. It’s part of the eastern gateway of the Conejo Valley, which includes one of Southern California’s major life sciences clusters. Nearly 70 life and bio sciences firms occupy approximately 4.3 million square feet in the Conejo Valley, including Amgen, Baxter, Allergan and Takeda.

“Agoura Hills is more convenient than Thousand Oaks for bio tech recruiting talent from the San Fernando Valley, Downtown and West Los Angeles,” Harbor’s Rich McEvoy said in a statement. “We were able to identify a well-located building that was prime for multi-tenant life sciences conversion while helping A2 Bio meet its business objectives.”

While the total dollar volume of life sciences property sales dropped in the first half of 2022 compared to 2021, the average price nationwide reached a record high of $564 per square foot, according to a Newmark report.

Harbor and Gemdale also own Agoura Hill Business Park, an adjacent 114,325-square-foot office project, and made improvements to attract the life science groups expanding into the area, which included A2 Bio.

Mark Perry of CBRE represented Harbor and Platform Ventures in the acquisition. Rick Pearson of Cushman & Wakefield brokered the lease for A2 Bio. Jay Rubin and Jared Smits of Lee & Associates advised Adler Realty.

Gregory Cornfield can be reached at gcornfield@commercialobserver.com.