Credit: Wayne Lorentz

Upgrade, Inc., a San Francisco-based fintech company, is expanding its Arizona operations at Ren Square in Downtown Phoenix.

It is the third time Upgrade has added space since it moved into Renaissance Square in 2017. During this latest expansion, the company is leasing two additional floors, totaling 39,144 square feet of space, at the newly-renovated Renaissance Square project, which is located at Central and 1st Ave. in the heart of Downtown Phoenix. With this latest expansion, Upgrade’s presence at Ren Square totals approximately 108,000 square feet.

“Upgrade is a prime example of a technology company who has experienced the advantageous operating environment and utilized the skilled workforce Greater Phoenix offers companies looking to scale,” said Chris Camacho, president & CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “The company tripling its footprint since their initial establishment in 2017 is a testament to their entire team and the type of success the region helps companies attain. We’re excited to be a partner in Upgrade’s continued growth as they expand their footprint in Downtown Phoenix.”

Upgrade, Inc. is a neobank founded in 2016 that offers affordable and responsible credit to mainstream consumers. Upgrade has steadily expanded its services and enjoyed solid growth in its five years of business. The company is based in San Francisco and has an office in Montreal, Quebec, along with the Phoenix office. Upgrade maintains its service center out of this downtown Phoenix office.

“We have enjoyed operating our service center in Phoenix since inception and growing our presence every year to top 500 team members this year” said Jeff Bogan, Upgrade co-founder and CFO. “The Greater Phoenix talent pool has shown great skills, work ethics and diversity, enabling us to fulfill our mission to deliver more affordable and responsible credit to mainstream consumers.”

Phoenix-based Ryan Bartos from JLL and his San Francisco-based partner Matt Aljets have represented Upgrade in all of the lease transactions at Ren Square, including the latest expansion. Bartos noted that Upgrade has enjoyed great success hiring in its downtown Phoenix office and kept hiring throughout the pandemic, creating this demand for more space. Lee & Associates Arizona represented the landlord in the transaction.

“The ownership at Renaissance Square made it really easy for Upgrade to get into this additional space,” said Bartos. “Kudos to the Ren Square team for being responsive, creative and accommodating. The buildout of the space fit Upgrade’s culture. They are a tech company, so both of the spaces were creative in nature and that made this a pretty seamless expansion for them.”

Renaissance Square, which is owned by funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. (“Oaktree”) and Cypress Office Properties, LLC, is in the middle of a more than $50 million renovation that has made it one of the more sought-after Class A office towers in the Downtown Phoenix submarket. Encompassing an entire city block and totaling approximately one-million square feet in two Class A towers, completed renovations include new lobbies and lobby connector, a 7,500 square foot conference facility with space for meetings, training, board rooms, and other uses. There is also a state-of-the-art 20,000 SF on-site fitness center featuring a cardio studio, indoor basketball court, training area, free weights, racquetball courts, personal training, laundry service, private showers & lockers and much more. In 2020, Ren Square was awarded LEED certification at the Gold level by the U.S. Green Building Council.

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