When Take-Two Interactive, the video game giants behind such popular and violently lurid titles as Grand Theft Auto and Max Payne, had a few years remaining on its lease at 622 Broadway, the landlord, Yuco Management, found itself in a curious position.
Should Yuco Management aggressively market the 69,000 square feet of space Take-Two had called its own since 2002, thereby losing its anchor tenant? Or should it do anything it could to keep Take-Two, which had in some ways branded 622 Broadway as a distinctly hip and colorful office building, especially with its endless parade of behooded video game designers and executives?
“It’s the unique building where people don’t wear suits and ties and ride bicycles to work with their dogs,” said William Cohen, an executive vice president and principal at Newmark Knight Frank, who was hired alongside colleague Mark Weiss by Yuco Management to help decide the next best move. “I’m not kidding,”
The building had, in some ways, been transformed by Take-Two’s tenancy, as if by osmosis. There was a roof deck with views of the surrounding Noho and Soho areas that even Mr. Cohen himself deemed “cool.” There were the six total floors of space that featured mostly open and collaborative—and sometimes dark and secretive—floor plans.
“They’ve got top-secret floors that you can’t get on to without a black hood over your head,” joked Mr. Cohen. “They’ve got floors where guys sit with the lights off staring at the monitors all day … There’s a lot of heavy duty stuff, and it’s very secretive.”
Another attractive feature in the building, especially for a producer of video game software, was a Best Buy located in 622 Broadway’s retail floor.
Yuco Management had owned the building for at least a decade. Prior to Take-Two’s arrival, the building was outfitted with brand-new air conditioning, plumbing, bathrooms and elevators. It had been a building accustomed to having multiple tenants. Then Take-Two arrived, and the building suddenly changed from being known primarily as a multi-tenant office building to being a veritable house of video games.
Take-Two Interactive produces video games and other interactive entertainment through Rockstar Games and 2K, which publishes its titles through the 2K Games, 2K Sports and 2K Play brands.