There are nearly 900 Life Sciences companies in the San Francisco Bay Area. Approximately 700 are engaged in various forms of biotechnology including drug development, medical device manufacturing, and nanotechnology. From 1995 to 2008, the number of "green jobs" in California expanded by 36 percent to nearly 160,000 and the Bay Area is home to about 7,000 jobs in renewable energy generation (and counting), which includes solar and wind and renewable energy consulting services. In recent years, an entire “Cleantech” industry was born.
In 2008, Cornish & Carey Commercial Newmark Knight Frank’s Life Science Group was formed to serve the specialized space requirements that many of these companies need. For years, a few individual professionals at the firm specialized in biotech brokerage, which historically was confined to the South San Francisco submarket near Genentech. That began to change in the late 1990s.
Now, approximately 37 percent of lab space is located on the San Francisco Peninsula from Highway 92 north to San Francisco, and 30 percent is concentrated from 92 south to Santa Clara. The third biggest block of lab space—about 22 percent is in the East Bay with the remainder scattered in San Rafael, San Jose, Morgan Hill and a few other cities. Cornish & Carey produces quarterly market reports dedicated to Life Sciences and Lab Space.
Cornish & Carey Commercial Newmark Knight Frank broadly defines “Life Sciences” as those companies engaged in health-related laboratory work, pharmaceuticals, biotech research and development companies, healthcare organizations and medical device manufacturing and distribution companies. “Cleantech” companies are largely committed to research and development of alternative energy sources and methods to apply them, such as solar power, biomass fuels and electric cars. Additionally, technology innovators in the region develop measurement, monitoring and sensing devices with numerous applications for conversing natural resources.