Irvine Co.'s Flexible Office Solution

Brian Brown, a former Knotel executive, will head the new workspace initiative

BY GAIL KALINOWSKI ​ | ​ CPEXECUTIVE.COM ​ | ​ OCTOBER 24, 2019

 

Irvine Co. has launched Flex Workspace+, a new office solution that offers turnkey, fully furnished tailored workspaces with short-term leases starting at six months, and no upfront costs. Brian Brown, a former Knotel executive, has been appointed to lead Flex Workspace+, which is currently available in Irvine Co.’s California and Chicago portfolios.

The new offering replaces the ReadyNow suites program, which Irvine Co. pioneered more than a decade ago. The addition of flexible lease terms and tailored workspaces available within 30 days are among the changes made that are different than ReadyNow. Flex Workspace+ also offers tenants all-inclusive monthly payments and an Irving Co. team to manage the process. The spaces come complete with curated furniture configurations, branding, technology, and accessories developed in partnership with Gensler, a leading global design and architecture firm, and Herman Miller, a well-known furniture design company.

Other amenities include concierge-led move-in and onboarding, as well as access to Irvine Co.’s fitness facilities, outdoor spaces, onsite dining options and hospitality-inspired services from teams at the company’s office properties. Flex Workspaces+ will also include business spaces that embrace each tenant’s unique culture and feature activity-based “experience zones”​ that respond to the shifting needs of a diverse workforce throughout the day.

A DIVERSE CLIENTELE

While Irvine Co. expects Flex Workspace+ to appeal to small- and medium-sized businesses, Doug Holte, president of Irvine Co. Workplaces, noted large companies are also expected to lease the spaces. Holte said in a prepared statement they expect that over the next five to 10 years, many of their large-company customers will be benefiting from Flex Workspace+ as part of their workspace footprints. The new offering also gives smaller and medium-sized companies the flexibility to move into larger spaces as they grow.

Flex Workspace+ isn’t meant to replace companies like WeWork that provide shared working spaces typically for technology and other start-up firms. Irvine Co. does lease to WeWork and others. Earlier this year, WeWork signed a 44,520-square-foot lease at the firm’s 400 Spectrum Center in Irvine, Calif. In the past, companies that started in WeWork space have moved into ReadyNow suites.

Irvine Co. has nearly 50 million square feet of workplace communities in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and Silicon Valley in California. The privately held company also owns iconic trophy towers in New York City and Chicago, including the 50-story One North Wacker office tower. In March, One North Wacker added five new tenants in deals totaling 104,000 square feet. Fitch Group, a financial information services firm, plans to move into its new 65,392-square-foot office space in 2020. Other Chicago Class A office towers in the Irvine Co. portfolio are 300 North LaSalle and 71 South Wacker. Irvine Co. also owns the 58-story MetLife building at 200 Park Ave. in Midtown Manhattan that has more than 3 million square feet of office and retail space.

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