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Sony in Lease for Connect Venture

CALIFORNIA

January 31, 2005|Roger Vincent | Times Staff Writer

Sony Corp. has agreed to lease the top three floors of a Westchester office tower to house the headquarters of Connect, an online music venture the company launched last year.

The company will rent 75,000 square feet at 6080 Center Drive for five years from landlord Arden Realty in a transaction valued at about $11.3 million.

In March, Sony plans to consolidate Connect staff now split between the Sony Pictures compound in Culver City and the Sony Music offices on Colorado Avenue in Santa Monica. A Sony representative declined to say how many employees would move into the building in Howard Hughes Center.

Sony executives have disclosed plans to make Connect much more than just an online store for downloadable music. They want it to be an outlet for all forms of entertainment, with the next step likely to be video.

Sony will take over space formerly occupied by Vivendi Universal, which will consolidate its offices next door at 6060 Center Drive, said Michael Pollack of Arden. The Vivendi sign atop 6080 Center Drive will be replaced with one that reads "Connect" or "Sony Connect."

Los Angeles brokerage Cresa Partners represented Sony in the transaction.

Times staff writer Jon Healey contributed to this report.

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