One of Orange County’s slew of fast-growing e-bike manufacturers is moving its headquarters into one of the more prominent buildings in the area around John Wayne Airport to accommodate its rapid expansion.
Super73, an electric bicycle maker founded in 2016 in Tustin, has signed a nearly 70,000-square-foot lease at 2722 Michelson, a 154,418-square-foot building at the intersection of Michelson Drive and Jamboree Road in Irvine. The office sits less than a mile from John Wayne Airport, at the busiest intersection in the city.
Super73 has subleased a portion of Anduril’s current Irvine headquarters, as the defense-focused technology firm prepares to shift local operations to The Press, a 640,000-square-foot creative office and research hub under development in Costa Mesa.
Super73’s bikes are an eco-friendly mashup of a dirt bike and motorcycle, and don’t require a special driver’s license like typical motorcycles. Its entry-level bikes run around $1,400.
The e-bikes can go 28 mph or more, with a battery range of 20 to 60 miles depending on the ride conditions.
“2020 accelerated our growth plans by several years as a result of skyrocketing demand for electric motorbikes,” said Michael Cannavo, co-founder and chief marketing officer of Super73.
Super73 doesn’t disclose sales figures, but said its revenue doubled in 2020, and expects to double revenue again this year.
The company got its start in an approximately 8,000-square-foot space in Tustin and relocated to a 15,500-square-foot Irvine facility in 2019.
After the banner year in 2020, “we needed to look for a new home very quickly,” Cannavo told the Business Journal.
“We looked into buying, but we realized we could utilize our money better in a sublease,” Cannavo said of the deal that spans eight years. “It was a matter of finding a fiscally responsible option that can accommodate our growth.”
Super73 will move into some swing space at 2722 Michelson by Dec. 1, and will expand into more warehouse and R&D; space starting next year.
“The space is already designed for engineering purposes, with all spaces available to connect to welding stations and other heavy machinery,” said Cannavo of the space it is taking over from Anduril.
“Moving into this space will allow us to prototype much quicker.”
The firm is expected to maintain its existing Irvine site, which will be used as a customer service center for the community.
Super73 will join Viant Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: DSP), the Irvine-based ad tech company that went public early this year, and Anduril—in the short term—as tenants of the Irvine building. Viant leases some 47,000 square feet at the building in a deal that runs through mid-2022, according to the companie’s latest annual report.
About 37,000 square feet of that building remains to be leased; Super73 is slated to occupy that swing space in the interim, before Anduril vacates a 69,445-square-foot R&D; and warehouse portion of the building.
“Anduril has been fantastic to work with, and accommodating to Super73’s needs,” said JLL’s Mitch Lundquist, who represented the e-bike company along with Ben Halverson. “We engaged many landlords in the market that could accommodate Super73’s current and future growth plans, and this space was clearly the best in terms of expansion opportunities and the existing technology in the building.”
Tucker Hughes of Hughes Marino represented Anduril in the sublease, which comes about eight months after Anduril inked a massive deal to move its headquarters to the former site of the LA Times printing facility in Costa Mesa.
That 640,000-square-foot deal is among the largest office leases in OC’s history.
Anduril is expected to fully relocate from Irvine to Costa Mesa by 2023; the new headquarters is six times the size of its Irvine facility.
Anduril, founded in 2017 by Palmer Luckey, is the fastest-growing defense company in OC, and perhaps the country.
The new Costa Mesa headquarters is designed to accommodate current and future growth for Anduril, which currently employs north of 500 people in Orange County.
That figure is expected to hit 700 by early next year and surpass 1,000 the following year with no signs of slowdown; the new Costa Mesa location is expected to ultimately hold about 2,500 employees.
At that figure, Anduril would be among the top five largest aerospace and defense contractors in the county by worker count, according to Business Journal research.
Anduril’s new headquarters includes 450,000 square feet of office space now being redeveloped across the street from the city’s Ikea, as well as a brand new 190,000-square-foot research and development facility.
Anduril will move into The Press in phases over the next two years as construction wraps, with the company currently designing tenant-improvement plans for the first 146,000-square-foot office portion in the final stages.
It will then ramp up hiring and moving efforts, eventually moving into the final phase with the new 190,000-square-foot research and development building, at which point Anduril will fully vacate its current Irvine headquarters at 2722 Michelson.