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IRA Capital Expands Irvine HQ, Plans Further Buys

Irvine-based IRA Capital LLC, one of the most active commercial real estate investors in Orange County’s airport area the past few years, has inked a deal to double its local headquarters.

The company’s new office at 3121 Michelson Drive in Irvine’s Park Place mixed-use campus spans about 15,000 square feet, more than twice the size of the firm’s old space at Irvine Concourse.

The complex is about a mile from John Wayne Airport and is also off the San Diego (405) Freeway, which brings an added level of convenience for IRA’s roughly 20 employees, says Managing Partner Jay Gangwal.

“We definitely outgrew our prior space,” Gangwal told the Business Journal.

Now, “we have enough to allow for the current staff and for some modest growth over time.”

The new office is catty-cornered from the former headquarters of Costa Mesa-based defense contractor Anduril Industries, whose site was acquired by IRA two years ago.

It’s also about 2 miles from the Von Karman Creative Campus (VKCC), a 24-acre parcel that IRA bought earlier this year.

Irvine Projects

IRA’s office relocation brings the company close to its 9-acre, former Anduril site.

IRA spent $103 million on the lot at 2722 Michelson for the most expensive single-building office sale in the airport area of Irvine in 2021.

The deal for the 155,000-square-foot building came out to about $670 per square foot, making it the highest transaction on a per-square-foot basis in over a decade for an Orange County office larger than 150,000 square feet, according to data from real estate market tracker CoStar Group Inc.

Tenants at 2722 Michelson, located at the busy intersection of Jamboree Road and Michelson Drive now include Irvine-based media-focused tech company Viant Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: DSP) and electric motorbike company Super73.

IRA early this year paid $102.4 million for VKCC, the nine-building office park spanning nearly 450,000 square feet near the intersection of Von Karman Avenue and Alton Parkway.

EQ Office, formerly known as Equity Office, sold the site to IRA for about $230 per square foot, or $90 per land foot.

The deal was among the largest office sales in OC over the past year.

It’s too early for IRA to specify development plans for both of its sizable Irvine projects, Gangwal said.

IRA officials previously told the Business Journal that the company has been exploring several new uses for VKCC, such as lifescience and multifamily. City filings indicate that an industrial project has been considered for a portion of the campus.

IRA counts a portfolio of over 8.3 million square feet; nearly 70% of that is comprised of healthcare and medical offices, with the balance made up of traditional office, retail and multifamily.

New Healthcare Fund

The firm remains in growth mode.

“We’ve been identifying a number of investments both locally and nationally that we’re going to continue to pursue,” Gangwal said.

IRA’s upcoming investments may be supported from its recently launched $500 million Healthcare Real Estate Fund LP.

The fund, unveiled a day after IRA’s Irvine office expansion announcement, focuses on the acquisition of medical and senior housing properties across the U.S.

The company’s healthcare real estate acquisitions have averaged a net 48% annualized return and a net 1.7 times equity multiple for its investors, officials said.

Projected annualized net returns for the new healthcare fund range from 14% to 16%, with a net equity multiple of 1.7 to 1.9 times.

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Sonia Chung
Sonia Chung
Sonia Chung joined the Orange County Business Journal in 2021 as their Marketing Creative Director. In her role she creates all visual content as it relates to the marketing needs for the sales and events teams. Her responsibilities include the creation of marketing materials for six annual corporate events, weekly print advertisements, sales flyers in correspondence to the editorial calendar, social media graphics, PowerPoint presentation decks, e-blasts, and maintains the online presence for Orange County Business Journal’s corporate events.
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