Silicon Valley Bank poised to lease offices in San Francisco

Eight months after it was left for dead, Silicon Valley Bank is inking a deal for a new office in San Francisco’s South Financial District.

The Santa Clara-based financier for tech startups, which became the nation’s second largest bank to collapse last spring, is poised to sublease 60,000 square feet of offices at 222 Second Street, the San Francisco Chronicle reported, citing unidentified sources.

SVB, which was acquired by North Carolina-based First Citizens Bank after its takeover by federal regulators, will move out of its 83,000-square-foot office at 505 Howard Street.

“The new SVB office space, just down the street, will continue to enable us to provide a high-quality work environment for our employees as well as collaboration and event space to host and interact with our clients,” an SVB spokesperson said in an email to the Chronicle. 

Sources said SVB has a letter of intent for offices leased by LinkedIn at the 26-story tower. While the deal isn’t done, the “terms are agreed to,” said a source familiar with the negotiations.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In 2014, LinkedIn pre-leased the 453,000-square-foot Second Street building owned by Tishman Speyer while it was under construction. The Sunnyvale-based unit of Microsoft grew during the pandemic, then began laying off nearly 1,400 workers this year.

Part of the office tower was listed for sublease last month, though LinkedIn began quietly marketing its offices during a broad pandemic shift to remote work.

SVB’s move to Second Street means the bank will occupy fewer offices than it had in years past.

A year before its collapse, the bank was expanding in San Francisco as many companies were scrambling to shed unused offices. In January last year, SVB agreed to add 17,000 square feet to its offices on Howard Street, bringing its footprint to 83,000 square feet. 

More than a third of San Francisco’s offices now sit empty, according to CBRE. At least 10 percent of the market’s available offices are subleases, according to Colliers.

But in recent months, demand from office tenants — measured by the square footage of tenants in the market — hit 5.2 million square feet, the highest since early 2020, according to CBRE. 

Even before looking at a potential move across San Francisco, SVB boosted its presence in the city. Last spring, it opened the SVB Experience Center, a 120-seat venue at 532 Market Street, to host events with venture capitalists and tech founders. 

“Obviously this past spring we had our challenges, but the great news is that six months on, we’re back,” Andy Tsao, managing director of SVB’s Global Gateway, said last month at the experience center.

“This space and the events that we do highlight the fact that we are back and eager to reengage with the community.”

— Dana Bartholomew

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