Biopharmaceutical firm ZymoGenetics and Alexandria Real Estate Equities have completed a sale-leaseback transaction involving ZymoGenetics’ Seattle headquarters.

The sale-leaseback fetched about $330 per sq. ft., which is considered very high for laboratory space. Alexandria purchased three buildings for approximately $52 million.

ZymoGenetics has agreed to lease the facility for 15 years, with an option to renew at the end of the term. The Staubach Company represented ZymoGenetics, and Insignia Kidder Matthews represented Alexandria, a publicly traded real estate operating company.

"This transaction gives the company more than $50 million that can be invested in the development of our product portfolio, focusing our capital in areas that we believe will generate the most value for our shareholders," says James Johnson, senior vice president and CFO of ZymoGenetics.

The properties include two historic buildings originally used to generate steam and electricity for Seattle. ZymoGenetics acquired the buildings in 1993, converting them into biotech research and development labs. A supplemental facility was built nearby in 1998. The buildings are located near the University of Washington and feature lake views, two factors that were partly responsible for driving up the price.