Clorox to sublease four floors at Oakland headquarters

Total subleases since last year would reduce footprint by two-thirds

The Clorox Building at 1221 Broadway in Oakland and the Clorox ceo Linda Rendle (The Clorox Company, Google Maps)
The Clorox Building at 1221 Broadway in Oakland and the Clorox ceo Linda Rendle (The Clorox Company, Google Maps)

Bleach giant Clorox has cleaned up its Downtown Oakland headquarters by putting four floors up for sublease.

Clorox listed 81,600 square feet at 1221 Broadway, the San Francisco Business Times reported, citing a real estate brochure from Cresa.

The consumer products company is “continuously exploring options to make more efficient use” of its office space, Clorox said in a statement.. It said the sublease would have no impact on its headquarters employees.

Brokers Craig Zodikoff and Ileana Ray of Cresa hold the listing.

Clorox’s lease for half of the 535,000-square-foot tower runs through 2027. Early last year, it subleased another four floors containing 80,000 square feet to data firm FiveTran. A second sublease would shrink its headquarters footprint by about two-thirds.

Early last year, a company executive said Clorox wanted to employ a hybrid work model, which could benefit its workforce and reduce operating costs.

“We believe the future of work is hybrid,” Kirsten Marriner, its chief people and corporate affairs officer, told the Los Angeles Times. “We’re changing everything about how we learn, how we work.”

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Clorox leased its headquarters building in 2012 after selling it to San Diego-based Westcore Properties for $110 million.

The 24-story tower, designed by Cesar Pelli in 1976, has traded twice since the Westcore purchase. Westcore sold it to Swiss financial giant UBS in 2015 for $165 million. UBS then sold it to New York-based KKR and TMG Partners, based in San Francisco, in 2018 for $255 million.

The reduced presence by Clorox could further damage the Downtown Oakland office market, whose core business district registered a 33.1 percent vacancy rate in the third quarter, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

Downtown businesses, suffering from a lack of foot traffic, implored city leaders this month to fully reopen City Hall and enforce its encampment management plan.

One local developer, Riaz Taplin of Riaz Capital, was so frustrated by city inaction on its dead downtown – where crime is up and homelessness has gotten worse since the pandemic – he’s pivoting to building workforce homes outside the city.

The declining Oakland office market even led one developer to change its building plans. CIM Group, based in Los Angeles, filed new plans this month to switch from a 46-story office tower to a nearly 600-unit residential highrise in Downtown Oakland.

— Dana Bartholomew

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