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Griffin Invests $215 Million to Add DreamWorks HQ to Essential Asset REIT Portfolio

Griffin Capital Essential Asset REIT Inc., a publicly registered non-traded real estate investment trust sponsored by Griffin Capital Corporation, purchased the DreamWorks Animation’s Headquarters and Studios Campus in Glendale, California for $215 million.

Constructed in 1997 as a build-to-suit for the tenant, the DreamWorks headquarters comprises five buildings totaling 460,000 square feet. The property was expanded in 2010 and features Tuscan-inspired architecture within a self-contained creative office campus which includes an employee cafeteria, training rooms and on-site Starbucks. It also houses all of the essential infrastructure in the animated feature film business including state-of-the-art digital animation and editing equipment, motion capture and sound recording studios and a sizeable screening room. Located in the Tri-Cities submarket, the property sits at the epicenter of the entertainment industry in Los Angeles, minutes from other major studios including Warner Bros. Studios, Walt Disney Studios and Universal Studios.

The DreamWorks property was acquired from SunTrust Equity Funding LLC and is fully leased to DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. The lease term has approximately 20 years remaining, with 1.5 percent annual base rental rate increases. DreamWorks Animation is an industry-leading animation studio responsible for generating such critically-acclaimed and commercially successful movie franchises as Shrek, Madagascar, How to Train Your Dragon and Kung Fu Panda.

Michael J. Escalante, Griffin Capital’s chief investment officer, added, “DreamWorks Animation, led by Jeffrey Katzenberg, is legendary in the field of animated feature films, and has enjoyed a long track record of commercial and critical success. We welcome the addition of their world class, creative office campus, which is located in the heart of Los Angeles’ Media Studio District, to the GCEAR portfolio.”

Griffin Capital Essential Asset REIT Inc.’s portfolio currently includes 71 office and industrial distribution properties totaling approximately 16.43 million rentable square feet.