Gilead Buys 12 More Acres Near Headquarters for $120 Million

Published: Sep 04, 2015

Gilead Buys 12 More Acres Near Headquarters for $120 Million
September 3, 2015
By Mark Terry, Breaking News Staff

It was reported yesterday that Foster City, Calif.-based Gilead Sciences, Inc. has purchased approximately 12 acres in Foster City, which could accommodate up to 800,000 square feet of building space. The two adjacent properties were acquired for about $120 million.

The company is currently expanding in a 72-acre campus in Foster City off Vintage Park. It has also acquired six other properties in the area. With the next acquisition, the company is sitting on an additional 100 acres of potential office space throughout the city.

Gilead is best known for its blockbuster hepatitis C drugs, Harvoni and Sovaldi, which account for about 95 percent of its revenue. At the company’s recent second quarter financial report it showed $8.244 billion in revenue for the quarter, up from $6.535 billion in the same quarter in 2014. Six-month numbers were $15.838 billion in 2015, up from $11.534 billion in 2014.

With that kind of revenue and $17.8 billion in free cash and a total debt of about $12.3 billion, analysts are speculating on whether the company will soon make a big acquisition. A big target would be Bristol-Myers Squibb Company , although Vertex Pharmaceuticals , Intercept Pharmaceuticals , Incyte Corporation and Biogen, Inc. have all been mentioned.

In addition to the new sites in Foster City, in May Gilead conducted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for two new laboratory buildings in Edmonton, Alberta (Canada). It also announced it was investing $100 million in expansion and upgrades.

Those two laboratories will employ almost 170 additional scientists in Edmonton, which already hires about 300 people in the area. The newest facility is worth $200 million and will be about 45,000 square feet. The two new Edmonton buildings will have a combined square footage of 184,000. They will be used to support the development and manufacturing of new therapies, and supply active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) for clinical research and supply materials for new launches in the areas of hepatitis C, HIV/AIDS and oncology.

In terms of the new properties in Foster City, Curtis Banks, the city’s community development director, told The Daily Journal that, “When these sites come up, they’re not easy to find sites that are already entitled. For this type of square footage, particularly close to their existing campus, I suspect it was enticing for them. As their company continues to grow, this would provide them, while not directly on their campus, space very close to their campus.”

Gilead has a master plan for its campus that involves redeveloping 12 office and lab buildings into 17 new buildings, which would have a capacity of up to 2.5 million square feet. Construction on a 10-story, 314,000-square-foot building at 309 Velocity Way is under way.

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