PlanetArt is one of the world’s largest ecommerce players in the personalized products space, developing innovative solutions for millions of people across the country and in 11 other markets worldwide, ranging from photo prints and photo books to wall décor and personalized gifts. As the company has grown, their headquarters operations expanded to include offices in four different international locations, including China and France.
The company became aware of an opportunity to purchase Personal Creations, a subsidiary of FTD, Inc. which filed bankruptcy in the second quarter of 2019. PlanetArt qualified as a bidder for Personal Creations, and the project began as an exploration of the potential acquisition of the company, with the majority of its office staff in San Diego.
PlanetArt’s leaders placed great importance on building a new office within northern San Diego’s technology hub so they could make a positive impact in a metropolitan location that would engage and make current employees feel welcome, resetting the company’s psyche for a greater application and integration of technology.
The if/then equation involved the rapid analysis of needs within the Personal Creations organization as it separated from the mother company FTD and away from two sister companies with shared operations. If PC weren’t purchased or if it were purchased by a direct competitor in the gifts space, it was quite likely that the team would be without jobs. With a quick back-of-the-napkin sketch for office space and evolving notions toward conferencing and collaboration needs, J S D A Inc. teamed with PlanetArt as CBRE toured the team through a few available tenant spaces in La Jolla and Sorrento Mesa. Team leaders were sequestered in hotels—a confab of IT, tech and design evaluating potential spaces with feasibility studies and fit plans produced with 24 hours of receiving the existing as-built floor plans from CBRE. Each option was evaluated and each landlord contacted to enter into lease negotiations on the belief that PlanetArt would, in fact, successfully purchase Personal Creations.