Thought Logic, founded in 2014 in Atlanta, has leased 3,200 square feet downtown in the Powers-Taylor building at 13 S. 13th St., adding to the redeveloped office property’s growing tenant list.
Managing partner Jeff Deyerle will lead Thought Logic’s local office initially as a one-man show targeting Richmond businesses that need help with analytics, project leadership and other issues.
Deyerle, who grew up in Roanoke and graduated from UVA, said Thought Logic liked Richmond because of the number of potential clients in the area and the lower cost of living and cost of doing business. He said the company typically targets clients that have more than $100 million in revenue.
“We were looking for a second city and Richmond shot to the top of our list,” Deyerle said.The company, whose clients include Coke, Invesco, GE and McKesson, has 40 employees in Atlanta. Deyerle expects the Richmond office to potentially grow to eight to 10 people this year.
Thought Logic will look to fully move into its first floor and mezzanine space in June, when it will be joined in the four-story, 23,000-square-foot building by local private equity firm Turning Basin Capital Partners.
Turning Basin is an offshoot of sorts of Ewing Bemiss & Co., a local investment banking firm that was absorbed last year by financial giant KPMG.
Turning Basin, which was not part of that deal, shared a 7,000-square-foot office with Ewing Bemiss in Riverfront Plaza, and managing partners Mark Murray and Tom Willingham were left with more space than they needed and a lease coming up in June.
They signed on for 2,000 square feet in the Powers-Taylor building’s second floor, giving them enough space to grow as they continue to search for deals in the energy sector.
“We were looking for something that would suit us over the next couple of years with five or six employees,” said Willingham.
The firm is focused on doing small buyouts of companies in the energy industry, including gas, power generation, electrical generation or distribution. It typically looks for companies valued at $20 million or less, Murray said.
It has made three acquisitions since its founding in 2013, the most recent coming last month with an investment in a company near Houston that services above-ground oil tanks.
The 13th Street property is being rehabbed by a group that includes Yogi Singh of local real estate firm Capital Square 1031.
They bought the building in May 2014 for $1.45 million and began construction later that year.
The building’s momentum began last year when local investment firm 1607 Capital Partners signed on as anchor tenant with 10,000 square feet on the building’s upper floors.
1607 was followed by Humble Haven Yoga, which took 1,800 square feet on the first floor.
With the addition of Turning Basin Capital and Thought Logic, the building has only 1,600 square feet remaining for lease on the second floor. Singh said it’s filled up faster than the developers expected, given the glut of office space available downtown.
“We were a little hesitant when we saw so many major shifts in these downtown towers and we thought our runway would be a little more than 24 months,” Singh said. “But we’ve been extremely pleased with the reception of the type of space we’re creating: a practical mix of modern office and highlighting the historic nature of the building.”
Xenith Bank has financed the project. Hourigan Construction is the general contractor. Amrit Singh of Fultz Architects is the architect. The project recently won an award from Greater Richmond Association of Commercial Real Estate for best historic office rehab.
Thought Logic was represented in its Richmond office search by broker Scott White from Colliers International. Mark Douglas from Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer represent the landlord. Zack Roski of CBRE represented Turning Basin.
Singh and his group carried out a similar transformation on the nearby 1401 E. Cary St., converting it from the former These Four Walls furniture store into the new home of law firm Kaplan Voekler Cunningham & Frank, among other tenants.
The developers are also part of the group renovating the former Have a Nice Day Café building at 11 S. 18th St. The 13,000-square-foot property is being converted into the new headquarters for Capital Square.