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Ogilvy & Mather Moving to Culver City Warehouse

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Advertising giant Ogilvy & Mather has decided to go with the funky flow and move its primary West Coast operation to a renovated warehouse in Culver City from an elegant Brentwood high-rise.

O&M;'s 140 local employees will relocate as early as June from the marble-finished Wilshire Landmark II on Wilshire Boulevard to about 28,000 square feet of customized, high-ceiling space at 3530 Hayden Ave., just south of National Boulevard in Culver City’s Hayden Tract redevelopment area.

The new digs reflect the “new face” of Ogilvy & Mather, said co-President and Creative Director Joe McDonagh. “We’re taking our Madison Avenue button-down shirts off and finally donning our khakis and T-shirts,” he said. “We’re expressing our true personality.”

The New York-based ad agency’s new space housed an appliance factory when it was built more than half a century ago. It is one of several older warehouses that local entrepreneurs Frederick and Laurie Samitaur Smith--with help from architect Eric Owen Moss--have been renovating for mostly media, technology and artistic tenants in their development known as Conjunctive Points.

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The agency and its landlord declined to disclose financial details of O&M;'s 10-year lease with the Smiths’ company, Samitaur Constructs. But local real estate sources estimated that the deal is valued at more than $10 million, based on rents at comparable properties. John Vinnicombe of Jones Lang LaSalle helped negotiate the lease for O&M.;

O&M;'s move reflects a recent trend, with rents of prime office buildings continuing to rise and with businesses in creative fields increasingly interested in nontraditional offices. But Conjunctive Points’ designers and developers have been working on unconventional warehouse conversions for more than a decade.

“I think what Frederick [Smith] envisioned a long time ago is really happening now,” said First Property Realty’s Ian Strano, who handles leasing at the 15-acre complex. “We don’t have enough space to meet all the demand.”

America Online, Pittard Sullivan, Media X and Metafor Imaging are among the tenants already leasing space at Conjunctive Points.

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