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Business Observer Friday, Apr. 10, 2020 1 year ago

Biotech firm leases 60,000 square feet in Manatee County

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Akron Biotechnology of Boca Raton will use stand-alone building to increase its cryo-related gene therapy manufacturing capacity
by: Kevin McQuaid Commercial Real Estate Editor

                Akron Biotechnology LLC, a Boca Raton-based firm that develops cell and gene therapy and other treatments in cryo-technology, has leased a 60,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Manatee County.

                The company’s commitment to 600 Tallevast Road will bring at least 20 jobs during the first year of operation, says Akron CEO Claudia Zylberberg.

                Akron intends to begin occupying the space, which had been inhabited by Cambryn Biologics, within the next two months. The company intends to use the single-story building to increase its manufacturing capacity, Zylberberg says.

              “We’re starting to work on the building now, and we’ll slowly get into the space,” Zylberberg says. “Because of Covid-19, we’re looking forward to the next few months. But we have our team ready now. We think we can ramp up fairly quickly.”

               The privately held company, which was formed in 2006, will be assisted in the new endeavor by San Francisco-based Arcline Investment Management, a life sciences-focused private equity investment firm with $1.5 billion in assets. Arcline acquired a majority interest in Akron last September, according to company data.

               Akron’s deal represents one of the largest new industrial transactions in the Sarasota-Manatee submarket in the past year.

             “It’s a pretty sizeable deal for this market, especially in the area of manufacturing,” says Nick DeVito II, a partner in the Sarasota-based commercial real estate firm Ian Black Real Estate who specializes in industrial properties.

             “I’d say any transaction over 20,000 is sizeable for this region,” DeVito adds. “If you’re a tenant looking for 50,000 square feet or above, there are really only about seven or eight spaces will enough capacity in the two-county area.”

             Zylberberg says that in addition to boosting Akron’s internal capabilities, the company looks forward to being part of a larger business and scientific community in Manatee County.

            “We’re hoping to bring and establish more of a biotech sector to the area,” she says.

 

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