Facebook buys unused headquarters even as more employees work remotely

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REI announced in August that it had decided to sell the 400,000-square-foot campus complex in Bellevue, Wash., Into which it had planned to move into this summer. He revealed on Monday that he had made a deal to sell the property for $ 390 million. Facebook (FB) buys the buildings and most of the land for $ 367.6 million, while the site developer buys an undeveloped 2-acre portion of the property for the remainder of the sale price.

But Facebook has been adding staff throughout this year and adding office space with them.

“In order to meet our rapidly growing workforce, we continue to invest in physical offices,” a statement from Facebook said. “In the second quarter of 2020, we added a record 4,200 new net employees and now have over 52,000 employees. While Facebook predicts that 50% of its employees will be working remotely within the next 5-10 years, our offices are still vitally important to our culture and will help adapt to anticipated growth and meet the needs of our employees who need or prefer to work from campus. ”

Facebook, which is based in Menlo Park, Calif., Already had three other buildings under development in the same business district as the REI site.“An internal employee survey conducted by the company in May showed that about 65% of Facebook employees were eager to get back to the office as soon as possible,” Facebook said.

But some other tech companies are forgoing office space plans, despite their own growth. Two weeks ago Pinterest (ÉPINGLES) announced that it had terminated its lease for approximately 490,000 square feet of office space to be built near its current headquarters in San Francisco.

“As we analyze how our workplace will change in a post-Covid world, we are specifically rethinking where future employees might be based,” Pinterest chief financial officer Todd Morgenfeld said in a statement provided to CNN Business. “A more distributed workforce will give us the opportunity to hire people from a wider range of backgrounds and backgrounds. “

REI, which specializes in camping and other outdoor gear and clothing, is a customer-owned cooperative. It has 167 stores in 39 states. Although it does not release quarterly results, most physical retailers reported a sharp drop in sales earlier this year due to store closings associated with the Covid-19 pandemic. REI has also moved employees from its headquarters to remote work due to health concerns.

The company said it has decided to now have its headquarters at multiple locations in the Puget Sound area. REI will also make the headquarters employees work remotely as its normal model in the future.

“We have learned that the more distributed way of working that we previously thought was untenable will instead unleash incredible potential,” Eric Artz, CEO said in August. “This will have immediate positive impacts on our ability to attract and retain a diverse and highly skilled workforce, as we continue to navigate the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.

REI had been planning the new headquarters for four years and it had been under construction for two years.

“The sale represents a positive return on the co-op’s investment in the property,” according to REI’s statement.

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