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BioMed, Alexandria both strong in first quarter

Rancho Bernardo-based Biomed Realty Trust (NYSE: BMR) and Pasadena-based Alexandria Real Estate Equities, both with millions of square feet of life science real estate in San Diego County, each posted strong first quarters in 2014.

For the quarter ended March 31, BioMed posted $20.76 million in net income on $168.87 million in revenue -- compared with $17.45 million in net income on $160.45 million in revenue for the like period a year earlier.

BioMed, which actually owns more life science space on the Eastern Seaboard than it does in San Diego County, executed 59 leasing transactions representing 480,400 square feet. That included 126,200 square feet of preleasing and 96,100 square feet of positive net absorption.

While BioMed's operating portfolio averaged 91.5 percent leased, its development portfolio at 81.7 percent leased has a bit further to go.

Leases were signed with Synthetic Genomics Inc. and Human Longevity Inc., two genomic research organizations co-founded by genomics research pioneer J. Craig Venter, totaling approximately 125,200 square feet at the company's 4570 Executive Drive property in the University Towne Centre area.

Concurrent with these first-quarter transactions, BioMed terminated its leases at 4570 Executive Drive with Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE: BMY) and another tenant, which were previously scheduled to expire in phases from 2015 to 2018.

BioMed added approximately 1 million square feet to the company's portfolio during the quarter through its investment in properties at 300 George St. and 100 College St., adjacent to the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn.

As a result of the acquisitions, Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: ALXN) was added to the company's top 10 tenant roster. Alexion plans to use its new space as its corporate headquarters.

BioMed also repaid in full the $333.4 million principal amount outstanding on its mortgage loan secured by the Center for Life Science | Boston.

The Rancho Bernardo REIT also completed a public offering of $400 million aggregate principal amount of 2.625 percent senior notes due 2019, priced at 99.408 percent of the principal amount to yield 2.752 percent.

"We remain focused on providing real estate solutions that serve as the connection point for the academic, medical research and commercial biotech communities," Alan Gold, BioMed chairman and CEO said in a statement. "Our recent accomplishments clearly demonstrate our continued strong execution on this strategy as illustrated by the significant leasing in Philadelphia and San Diego, and our recently announced acquisition in New Haven, on the front doorsteps of Yale University."

BioMed reported 10 lease renewals totaling approximately 173,100 square feet, highlighted by a lease extension with Revance Therapeutics Inc. for approximately 90,400 square feet at the company's Pacific Research Center in Newark, Calif.

At March 31, 2014, BioMed's total portfolio was made up of approximately 16.3 million rentable square feet, plus land supporting an additional 4.9 million square feet of development potential.

Alexandria Real Estate Equities, in the meantime, may not be headquartered in San Diego County but continues to invest here in a major way.

Alexandria, which also has a huge East Coast presence in the Boston/Cambridge market in particular, paid $64 million for an 116,556-square-foot life science building at 3535 Cray Court in January.

That building is fully leased to the Scripps Research Institute according to The CoStar Group.

Alexandria also acquired three buildings totaling 42,271 square feet at 4025, 4031 and 4045 Sorrento Valley Blvd. in Sorrento Valley for a total of $12.35 million in March.

In addition, Alexandria has been redeveloping buildings totaling 115,895 at 10121 and 10151 Barnes Canyon Road that the REIT acquired in July of last year.

"Our first-quarter results in 2014 continued to highlight the momentum of our improving fundamentals, which is driving stable and solid growth," Joel S. Marcus, chairman, CEO, and founder of Alexandria said in a statement. "The sustained migration into Class A collaborative science and technology campuses in urban innovation clusters continues to drive demand for our properties."

"Our leasing volume was considerable, particularly in light of the extremely low level of contractual lease expirations in 2014," Marcus added."Our occupancy in 2014 continued to increase to record levels and we completed $142.7 million of acquisitions thus far in 2014."

Alexandria had a total market capitalization of approximately $9 billion as of March 31, 2014, and an asset base of 31.2 million rentable square feet, including 17.7 million rentable square feet of operating and current value-creation projects.

The REIT also has an additional 13.5 million of rentable square footage in future ground-up development projects.

Alexandria's stock price was up by 43 cents to $74.68 on Tuesday. The stock has ranged from $60.86 to $78.43 during the past 52 weeks.

BioMed Realty's stock closed at $20.92, down by 2 cents on Tuesday. The stock has ranged from $17.90 to $23.13 per share during the past 52 weeks.

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