July 1, 2014by debbieheinze

By Nathan Donato-Weinstein

A little over a year after signing Nimble Storage to the River Oaks campus, Bixby Land Co. has sold the property in North San Jose for more than two and a half times what the firm paid for it back in 2011.

An affiliate of American Realty Capital LLC, a Boston-based real estate adviser, paid $52.1 million, or about $316 a square foot, for the project at River Oaks Parkway and Zanker Road. Bixby bought the three-building campus in two deals in 2011 for about $19.5 million, or $118 per foot, and pumped millions into renovations.

“We developed a vibrant, collaborative work environment with the image and amenities that today’s companies demand,” said Bill Halford, president and CEO of Bixby Land Company, in a statement. “This is a fitting time to realize our investment objective following the successful renovation and leasing of the project.”

Irvine-based Bixby has racked up a string of successes buying, renovating, leasing and selling office parks in need of some TLC. The recipe includes hiring noted designers to pull together a campus-style environment with outdoor amenities, modern lobbies and upgraded finishes and window lines. In the case of River Oaks, that included a 30,000-square-foot “outdoor living room” that Bixby says “provides the ambiance of a private park for employees.”

Last July, Bixby and JP Morgan sold a two-building campus in Santa Clara for $42 million one year after signing Infoblox Inc. to a long-term lease. The 127,000-square-foot property was located at 3111 Coronado Drive. Bixby had spent about $5.5 million to modernize it.

Most recently, Bixby landed Verizon for two buildings totaling 130,000 square at its project at 375 W. Trimble Road, where it still has a third building available.

Bixby is hoping lighting also strikes at Lake Park Business Center, a seven-building, 405,000-square-foot office park in Santa Clara it picked up for about $110 million, or $265 per square foot. Bixby intends to invest about $20 million in renovations, Halford told the Business Journal in March.

American Realty Capital is one of the nation’s largest commercial landlords. Earlier this year, American Realty bought Cole Real Estate Investments Inc., a move that was covered extensively by my colleague Kristena Hansen at the Phoenix Business Journal.

Bixby was represented by Mark Penrod and Andy Zighelboim with Eastdil Secured, while American Realty Capital represented itself in the sale.

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