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T3 has helped tech giant HubSpot in every stage of growth—from its first headquarters in Cambridge, MA, to its now 2,000+ employees in 7 offices worldwide. Acting as an extension of HubSpot’s existing real estate team, T3 has advised the company throughout three key phases:

  • Startup Growth
  • Pre-IPO Expansion
  • Global Scaling

Startup Growth

The Challenge: By 2010, HubSpot had outgrown its co-working startup space and found itself facing a challenge common among venture-backed tech companies: How do we solve for the next 12 months of forecasted headcount growth while also preparing for less predictable growth after our next round of funding? The HubSpot team needed to expand without overcommitting capital, all while navigating a full office buildout and 100-person relocation in the process—no small feat for a young and fast-growing company.

T3’s Approach: Focusing on a large, multi-tenanted building with an unusually large floor plate, our team targeted an initial 27,000 SF space for HubSpot, and negotiated strong first offer rights on other suites in the building to support future growth. We helped the team identify an architect and contractor able to create a space that aligned with HubSpot’s business goals and culture, and our project management team oversaw the entire buildout process, ensuring that the project was completed on time and within budget.

T3 is out there as a client-only representative, so there’s never that worry that they’re representing a landlord that you might be taking space from.

Ken Papa, Sr. Global Director of Real Estate & Facilities, HubSpot

The Result: Our “first rights” strategy meant that HubSpot could comfortably grow as it closed additional funding rounds and expanded its headcount. Four years and six lease amendments later, HubSpot controlled over 140,000 SF in the building. Employing us as an extension of its team instead of hiring a full-time project manager, HubSpot minimized costs and maximized value.

Anyone that’s been in the business for even a few years would know there’s people who have missed out on a Right of First Offer/Right of First Refusal (ROFO/ROFR) opportunity. I can tell you right now, I have not.

Ken Papa, Sr. Global Director of Real Estate & Facilities, HubSpot

Pre-IPO Expansion

The Challenge: Coming off years of steady, sustained growth, HubSpot faced new real estate challenges as it prepared to go public in 2014. The company needed to continue securing future space that would accommodate its rapid headquarters growth, but without multiple relocations that could disrupt culture or productivity.

T3’s Approach: Anticipating that HubSpot would outgrow its first headquarters, we proactively identified and secured spaces in neighboring buildings, securing subtenants to sublease this space for future expansion on a short-term basis so that it could be quickly made available to HubSpot as needed.

T3 really understands who HubSpot is. And I think understanding who your client is, versus just trying to find space for that client, allows you to find better space and better solutions.

Ken Papa, Sr. Global Director of Real Estate & Facilities, HubSpot

The Result: By establishing a presence in multiple neighborhood buildings in East Cambridge, HubSpot successfully executed its vision of an urban campus, providing the company’s real estate team with greater clarity into future growth requirements.

Global Scaling

The Challenge: Identifying the right cities for expansion is a challenge for any growing tech company. HubSpot realized early on that a location strategy governed by data-driven processes was critical to finding real estate solutions that allow for growth in tight markets.

T3’s Approach: Using an expansion strategy optimized for HubSpot’s unique business drivers, we leveraged a metrics- and data-driven process to select domestic and international locations for HubSpot. This process ranks locations using customized scorecards that measure each city’s fit against different HubSpot objectives. We actively planned for headcount growth scenarios to map out future space needs for each of HubSpot’s global offices, serving as a trusted, on-the-ground, strategic advisor and implementer.

Really getting the data to help us make the right decisions on which locations we should be going into next—that’s been huge for us.

Ken Papa, Sr. Global Director of Real Estate & Facilities, HubSpot

The Result: Using our robust scorecards as a guide—which include key data like labor depth and quality, costs, regulatory and tax landscapes, and accessibility—HubSpot has opened new offices in markets that include Dublin, Singapore, Sydney, Berlin, and Bogota. We continue to develop proactive global plans for the company by evaluating locations, conducting upfront planning prior to deal execution, and managing local market advisors to find the most efficient real estate solutions.

Everybody wants the ability to grow while being the ones that get the first bite at the apple. And we’ve been able to achieve that in almost all markets, and that’s been a saving grace to us.

Ken Papa, Sr. Global Director of Real Estate & Facilities, HubSpot
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