Dolby to Purchase San Francisco Tower for $109.8 Million

Dolby Laboratories Inc. (DLB), the audio- technology company whose products are used in cinemas, recording studios and video games, agreed to buy a 16-story tower in the San Francisco area that’s home to Twitter Inc., and will make the building its new headquarters.

The price was about $109.8 million, Dolby said in a regulatory filing. The company plans to fully occupy the tower at 1275 Market St., according to a statement today from Dolby and San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee. The building in the Mid- Market neighborhood, where Twitter relocated this month, can accommodate almost 1,000 employees.

“For more than 36 years, San Francisco has been a great place for developing our innovations in cinema, home theater and portable entertainment,” Dolby Chief Executive Officer Kevin Yeaman said in the statement. “Our new headquarters will allow us to grow and advance the entertainment experience.”

A non-refundable deposit of about $5.5 million has been placed in escrow, and the sale is expected to be completed on July 10, Dolby said yesterday in the filing. The building is being sold by TMG Partners and DivcoWest Inc., both based in San Francisco, according to Mike Covarrubias, TMG’s CEO.

The property, formerly home of the California State Compensation Insurance Fund, isn’t within San Francisco’s payroll-tax exclusion zone, according to the statement. Twitter was lured to Mid-Market in part by the city’s offer to suspend the business levy for six years.

Dolby’s current base is in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood. The company was chosen last month by Microsoft Corp. to provide audio for its Windows 8 software when the package is released later this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Levy in San Francisco at dlevy13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kara Wetzel at kwetzel@bloomberg.net

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