NAI Horizon professionals doubled down that a tenant looking to expand in the Valley wouldn’t be deterred by COVID-19 and helped it lock down a 28,000 SF sublease in the highly desirable Tempe market.

NAI Horizon Senior Vice President Troy Giammarco and Agent Joe Pequeno represented Bright Health Plan (BHP) of Minneapolis, Minnesota, in a long-term lease totaling $3.214 million at RIO 2100, 2120 Rio Salado Parkway in Tempe.

Bright Health will occupy 28,000 SF for a new contact center. It is scheduled to bring 35 jobs to Tempe this year with an additional 40 jobs in 2021. It will provide sales and sales service with plans to also provide bilingual phone- and chat-based support for all Bright Health Plan members in early 2021.

“When COVID-19 hit, we canvassed more and circled back with all our clients,” Giammarco said. “Joe made the call and set up the meeting with Bright Health. It was apparent immediately that our local contact, Anthony Wienberg, and BHP’s senior vice president of sales, Jim Bletzer, were on a mission to continue Bright Health’s expansion through the virus.

“Given Bright Health’s timetable and needs, we knew from the onset we would have to move quickly and a sublease would be the best path. Working with numerous

stakeholders and after fluid negotiations, we chose the Varsity Tutor sublease in Tempe,” Giammarco said.

Ryan Bartos of JLL represented the sub-landlord, Varsity Tutor of St. Louis. (The building’s primary landlord is Boyer).

“The final two weeks of details were a full-court press with both sides working in tandem to bring this 5-year sublease to a successful close,” Pequeno said. “We are thankful to all the team members that made this possible.”

Additional local stakeholders included the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) and the City of Tempe.

BHP was founded to create a more personalized and affordable member experience by improving access to healthcare and enabling stronger relationships between members and their providers. In Arizona, the company offers individual and family plans and Medicare Advantage plans in Maricopa County and individual and family plans in Pima County.

Bright Health is expected to open the office on October 1.