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Examiner out, R2integrated in for downtown skyline

Chemical IndustryBiotechnology IndustryFNB CorporationInner HarborHavasT. Rowe Price

The downtown Baltimore skyline is about to change.

The name of the defunct Examiner newspaper will no longer adorn the building at 400 E. Pratt St., visible throughout the Inner Harbor. Instead, the name of digital marketing firm R2integrated will go up on the Commerce Street side of the building in mid-October.

For more than a year, R2integrated has been subleasing the building's 11th floor, which had been vacated by the Baltimore Examiner. The free newspaper ceased publication in 2009 after less than three years in the market.

R2integrated recently signed a six-year lease for the 15,467-square-foot space. Along with that came signage rights.

"It feels really good to work so hard and to become part of the skyline" with Legg Mason and T. Rowe Price, said Matt Goddard, R2intergrated's CEO. "We are part of the club of these prestigious companies. That feels good all around."

The R2integrated sign will be able to change colors, allowing the firm to, for example, make it purple for Ravens games, Goddard said.

Launched in 2007, R2integrated now employs 105 workers, including 75 at the Baltimore headquarters. The company had been a tenant in the Emerging Technology Centers in Canton until it outgrew the space more than a year ago.

The company got a big shot in the arm earlier this year when Dallas-based Orix Private Equity said it would invest an undisclosed amount in R2integrated. It plans to use the money to rapidly expand through acquisitions and natural business growth. Its goal is to go from about $20 million in annual revenue to $100 million over the next few years.

The company is opening a New York office early next year, said David Taub, R2integrated's co-founder.

The 400 E. Pratt St. building is going through more renovations than a signage change.

"We are excited that the building is going through a transformation," Taub said.

A two-story, 24,000-square-foot addition that will include retail is being added, said Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate company representing the building's owner, PDL Pratt Associates LLC. Once completed the building will have about 167,750 square feet of space and be 95 percent occupied, the firm said.

Cushman recently announced other tenant leases:

•Accounting firm Ellin & Tucker will move its headquarters from 100 S. Charles St. to 11/2 floors in the Pratt Street building;

•Cerecor Inc., a biotechnology company moving from the Emerging Technology Centers, signed a lease for about 6,200 square feet on the sixth floor.

•Havas Discovery, a customer relationship management company, renewed its lease for 17,248 square feet on the 10th floor.

Matthew Haas, a managing director of Colliers International who represented R2integrated, noted that Pennsylvania-based FNB Corp. said this month it was opening a regional banking headquarters downtown and adding its name to the building at 300 E. Lombard St.

New names in the skyline will be refreshing, he said.

"In Baltimore, unfortunately, we have been mired in the recession," Haas said. "So it's nice to finally see us coming out."

eileen.ambrose@baltsun.com

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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