When lynda.com began moving its headquarters from Ventura to Carpinteria last year, few would have predicted the positive impact the company would have on the South Coast economy. In addition to adding 73 jobs since April 2009, lynda.com leased nearly 60,000 square feet of office and research and development space in Carpinteria.
Today, the company completed its second real estate purchase on the South Coast, buying the 57,474 square foot former Salvation Army buildings at 6410 Cindy Lane.
“Acquisition of the property enables lynda.com to better plan their current growth and future expansion needs while securing their future real estate needs in Carpinteria,” said Christos Celmayster of Hayes Commercial Group, who represented lynda.com in the transaction.
“We’re very exited to be able to expand our facilities and our presence in the South Coast business community,” said Lynda Weinman, co-founder of lynda.com. “We’re confident that this purchase will benefit not only the business, but the community, our employees, and ultimately our members. Creating a consolidated lynda.com campus with expanded, customized workspace literally allows us to have more room for creating an even more constructive educational experience for our members.”
In terms of dollar value, this is one of the top ten commercial property sales of 2010 on the South Coast, and it is the largest commercial sale of the year in Carpinteria. (The Lavender Court property was a larger transaction but is predominantly a residential development.)
lynda.com produces video training content specializing in digital arts, web development, and business productivity software, among many other topics. They produce CD- and DVD-based products, but much of their revenue is generated from online subscriptions, which allow members to access the entire library of more than 53,000 educational videos 24 hours a day from their computer or iPhone.
The site has been online for 15 years, and has continued to expand during the past three years despite the struggling economy. In terms of revenue, the privately-held company has grown more than 40 percent and was just recognized by the Pacific Coast Business Times as one of the Fastest Growing Companies in the Tri-Counties. Additionally, Lynda Weinman was recognized as the 2010 Entrepreneur of Year by the Santa Barbara Foundation at the annual South Coast Business and Technology Awards.
The existing buildings at 6410 Cindy Lane were built in the mid-1970s and housed corporate offices for Sambo’s Restaurants, which at the time was a NYSE-traded company with the largest chain of company-owned restaurants in the world. In 1987, the Salvation Army purchased the property and adapted the office building for use as a rehabilitation facility, while using the warehouse building for donation processing. After closing the rehabilitation facility and scaling back its use of the warehouse, and the Salvation Army put the property on the market for sale one year ago. lynda.com has not announced detailed plans for the property, but the company will most likely remodel the office building for use as offices, capitalizing on the ocean views, and update the warehouse building for a live-action recording studio for its online training videos.
lynda.com is one of only 22 companies that occupy more than 50,000 square feet of office space on the South Coast. Christos Celmayster of Hayes Commercial Group has represented lynda.com from the outset, handling all of their leasing since the company migrated north into Santa Barbara County.
“We are very pleased with the detail and attention Christos has given us in this transaction, just as he has in our previous negotiations,” said Ning Wang, CFO and COO of lynda.com. “He pays close attention to our very specific needs, which is truly integral to our continued business success and growth.”