SFCED | San Francisco Center for Economic Development


San Francisco’s Tech Frenzy Reaches Biggest Bank Tower

An iconic San Francisco office property in the heart of the financial district is poised for a makeover as surging technology firms squeezed out of the popular South of Market area migrate to other neighborhoods.

The complex at 555 California St., once Bank of America Corp.’s world headquarters and the city’s biggest office building, has about 200,000 square feet (18,600 square meters) available for the first time since its 1969 opening, said Bill Cumbelich, the listing broker at CBRE Group Inc. New York-basedVornado Realty Trust has hired an architect for a revamp of the property and is seeking more technology tenants following leases with Microsoft Corp. and Supercell Oy.

“We’re introducing the location to tech and entrepreneurs who never thought of working here,” Cumbelich said as he showed off “Clash of Clans” game maker Supercell’s penthouse office on the 52nd floor, above where Goldman Sachs Group Inc., KKR & Co. and Morgan Stanley lease space. “Every building needs a tech strategy.”

San Francisco, the best-performing U.S. office market, has absorbed hundreds of software, mobile-application and data-storage tenants since 2010, with many clustering in the converted warehouses and brick buildings of South of Market, or SOMA. That’s forced newer and expanding firms to go where space is more plentiful. Towers under development just outside SOMA have attracted some of the spillover, heightening the challenges for landlords with vacancies farther from the technology hub.

Read more: Bloomberg Businessweek San Francisco’s Tech Frenzy Reaches Biggest Bank Tower

SF's Tech Frenzy Reaches Biggest Bank Tower