Business Insider moving HQ to Brookfield’s 1 Liberty Plaza

News website taking 88K sf at Lower Manhattan tower

Business Insider CEO and Editor In Chief Henry Blodget (credit: Flickr) and 1 Liberty Plaza
Business Insider CEO and Editor In Chief Henry Blodget (credit: Flickr) and 1 Liberty Plaza

Business Insider is making a jump to Lower Manhattan from Midtown South, taking 88,000 square feet at Brookfield Property Partners’ 1 Liberty Plaza, sources told The Real Deal.

The business and tech website will relocate from its current headquarters at 150 Fifth Avenue in the Flatiron District and will follow in the footsteps of the music-streaming company Spotify, which kicked off a busy year for the Downtown market when it signed a lease in February for 378,000 square feet at Silverstein Properties’ 4 World Trade Center.

Business Insider, which was valued at $442 million two years ago when it was purchased by the German publisher Axel Springer, will take the entire eighth and ninth floors at Brookfield’s 2.3 million-square-foot tower. The lease starts at $53 per square foot, sources said.

A spokesperson for Brookfield declined to comment, and representatives from Business Insider could not be immediately reached. Bill Peters, Derek Trulson and Mike Shenot at JLL represented Business Insider in the lease. David Falk and Peter Shimkin at Newmark Knight Frank are handling leasing at 1 Liberty along with Brookfield’s in-house team. The brokers either declined to comment or could not be reached.

JLL’s Bill Peters, Derek Trulson and Mike Shenot

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A source with knowledge of the deal said Business Insider got priced out of the market in Midtown South, and was attracted to Brookfield’s building due to its location at the Fulton Transit Center, which makes for an easy commute for employees living in Brooklyn. The tower’s large, open floor plates also work well for the open-plan newsroom the company will work out of when it moves to the building later this year.

Business Insider was subleasing 41,000 square feet from the music publisher EMI Group at L&L Holding Company’s 150 Fifth.

The EMI lease covers the whole building, and sources said L&L is in early-stage of talks with Mastercard to lease the entire property when it becomes available next year. The landlord is asking somewhere in the range of the low-to-mid $90s per square foot for the space.

Earlier this year, Brookfield signed the insurer Aon and the cosmetics company New Avon to roughly 300,000 square feet at 1 Liberty.

Deals like Spotify’s and the New York Attorney General office’s 345,000-square-feet lease at 28 Liberty helped push Downtown’s leasing activity during the first quarter of 2017 to its best quarter in two years.