Lumentum buys big north San Jose office park where it will move HQ

San Jose Mercury News |

--SAN JOSE -- "The new location is a great place to showcase the company. It shows very well as a corporate headquarters," said Yves LeMaitre, chief strategy officer for Lumentum. "It's a good layout for our employees, including a lot of engineers. It's a very nice campus." The Lumentum headquarters currently are in Milpitas.

Lumentum Holdings, through its Lumentum operations unit, paid $54 million for the three-building office campus, which is known as Ridder Park Technology Center, according to public documents filed with the Santa Clara County Recorder's Office.

San Jose has been on a hot streak lately when it comes to attracting big new tech company operations. A number of the relocations have occurred in north San Jose, which recently was dubbed the Uptown area of the Bay Area's largest city.

"We look forward to shortening the commutes of hundreds of Lumentum employees while expanding Uptown's burgeoning ecosystem of leading innovative companies," San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo said Wednesday.

The campus totals 238,000 square feet and is located near the corner of Ridder Park Drive and Fox Drive. It's a short distance from the Interstate 880 and Brokaw Road interchange, according to a brochure from Colliers International, which had been marketing the property on behalf of the seller, Graymark Capital.

In , Lumentum bought Oclaro, another tech firm, through a $1.8 billion deal. That transaction provided further impetus for Lumentum to consolidate operations in one location.

"Our presence in the Bay Area has increased quite a bit, both because of the growth of the business and the acquisition of Oclaro," LeMaitre said.

Besides the Milpitas headquarters, Lumentum also operates in two smaller sites in San Jose. The company is expected to keep open the two San Jose wafer fab sites.

"We have been on the lookout for space, and our leases were expiring in some of the existing facilities," LeMaitre said. "We felt it was the right thing to do and the right time to do it."

The buildings have addresses of 1001 Ridder Park Drive, 1717 Fox Drive and 1751 Fox Drive. The sizes of the buildings are, respectively, 124,000 square feet, 65,000 square feet, and 49,000 square feet, according to the Colliers brochure.

Brokers from commercial real estate firms Colliers International and CBRE arranged the Lumentum property purchase in San Jose. The Colliers brokers were Shane Minnis, Michael Rosendin, Craig Fordyce, Andy Zighelboim, and Kevin Moul.

Google, Amazon, Roku, Apple and Samsung are among the big-name companies that have established beachheads or dramatically widened their footprints in San Jose. Plus, Adobe is preparing to build a fourth office tower in downtown San Jose, which would greatly increase the size of its three-building headquarters campus. In April, Hewlett Packard Enterprise opened its new headquarters in north San Jose after it had exited Palo Alto.

Lumentum makes products for optical networks, commercial laser and semiconductor markets. Over the one-year period that ended on , Lumentum earned $20.4 million on revenue of $1.46 billion, according to the Yahoo Finance site. That was on the heels of what the company described as "record" revenue of $1.25 billion for the calendar year of 2018.

"Our current plan is to move around 800 of our team members to the Ridder Park location before year's end," LeMaitre said.

The amount of square footage in the three buildings combined could be enough space to accommodate roughly 1,100 to 1,600 workers.

"Having people in one location is a great way to get teams to gel together, to create a common culture for everybody," LeMaitre said. "And hopefully we have more room to grow in the future because there should be room for expansion."

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