Job search site CEO nabs $85M Bel Air compound, co-working companies get creative, and more…

Los Angeles briefs

May 01, 2018 11:00 AM

2300 Imperial Highway in El Segundo

New home of LA Times is revealed

Billionaire medical entrepreneur Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong announced plans to move the 137-year-old Los Angeles Times from Downtown Los Angeles to El Segundo, a small city south of the Los Angeles International Airport that’s best known as a hub of aerospace and defense industries.

Soon-Shiong, who agreed to buy the Times in February for $500 million, made the announcement at a town hall-style meeting with staff on April 13, and the newspaper later announced it on its website.

The unassuming seven-story office building, at 2300 East Imperial Highway, is one of at least five buildings Soon-Shiong owns in the city. It’s currently being renovated to accommodate a newsroom on multiple floors, a cafeteria, retail shop, museum, studios and event spaces. The mission, he added, was “to create the most modern newsroom.” Soon-Shiong also said that the Times “[needs] to build a campus that is there for the next 100 years, not to lease a building.”

The Times has been at the Downtown building, which bears its name and is near many of the government institutions it regularly covers, since 1935.

Can the co-working craze last?

In Los Angeles, where the Entertainment and technology industries have bred an array of startups, co-working companies have also found their niche.

Across Greater L.A., these firms occupy about 3 million square feet of office space collectively, according to Cushman & Wakefield’s Vincent Chang. This year alone, Cushman expects co-working companies to fill 364,000 square feet, with most leases lasting 10 to 12 years. But they have gobbled up space at a speed that leaves some brokers wondering whether supply will soon outpace demand.

“It’s become the flavor of the month,” NAI Capital’s Joseph Faulkner said. “There’s almost more than anyone can keep up with.”

Each of the latest providers popping up also seems to have its own subspecialty, offering amenities the big kahunas of co-working, such as WeWork and Spaces, just don’t. Paragon, for example, announced it will be using blockchain to create a space that is solely for small companies and freelancers working in the legal cannabis industry. Meanwhile, Creative Talent Network recently launched a co-working office that will cater to students, professionals and entrepreneurs in the animation industry.

And as the craze continues, landlords are increasingly warming up to the idea of leasing their spaces to co-working companies. Landlords are hopeful that when a startup grows out of a co-working company, it will relocate to a private office suite in the building, brokers said.

Job search site CEO nabs $85M Bel Air compound

Tech CEO Hideki Tomita was revealed as the buyer of an $85 million Bel Air compound in March, acting through a Japanese entity called EKYT Co. Ltd.

The property includes a 19,000-square-foot main house and a 6,600-square-foot guest house by famed L.A. architect Paul Revere Williams. The main house was designed by John Pawson and built in 2009. It features a theater, gym and spa. Both homes have five bedrooms. The grounds include a pool and tennis court.

The sellers, Seagram Company heirs Ellen Bronfman Hauptman and her husband, Andrew Hauptman, listed the modern compound in September for $125 million. In 2016, Jeff Hyland of Hilton & Hyland listed the guest house as a rental for $45,000 a month.

Tomita founded DIP Corp, a job search and recruitment company that operates a handful of sites in Japan, in 1997. The company went public in 2004 and was valued at $1.2 billion with $306 million in sales and about 1,100 employees last year, according to Forbes.