Five Below chooses Lits Building for new Center City headquarters

Five Below Inc. is moving its headquarters across Center City to the former Lit Bros. building at 701 Market St. and taking over some of the one-time department store's retail space, according to two people with knowledge of the company's plans.

Five Below plans to lease 180,000 square feet of office space and 15,000 square feet of retail space in what is now known as the Lits Building, according to one of the two people.  

The discount teen-oriented store, which is receiving $1.36 million in state financial support in connection with the headquarters move, has committed to creating 154 high-wage full-time jobs over three years and to retaining 211 existing positions, the person said. 

Five Below chief executive Joel Anderson, company co-founder Tom Vellios, and Mayor Kenney are scheduled to announce the move Tuesday atop a parking structure near the 880,000-square-foot Lits Building, according to a media invitation.

The move comes during a period of rapid expansion for the chain, which sells items priced between $1 and $5. The company now operates more than 500 stores in 31 states, almost twice as many locations as it did around the time of its July 2012 initial public offering.

In 2012, Five Below moved into its current home at the 1818 Market St. office tower, where it now occupies 60,000 square feet. Anderson said in a conference call with analysts in August that a new Center City headquarters had been selected, but did not identify the site.

"We will be moving in 2018 to a larger space that can better accommodate our needs, as well as our expected home-office head growth, for a number of years to come," Anderson said. “It also affords us an opportunity to have things like a mock lab store on-site for our merchants. This is something we do not have today that will make us even more nimble."

Five Below spokeswoman Jessica Liddell did not respond to messages seeking additional details.

John Connors, managing partner of the Lits Building's owner, Brickstone Realty, also did not respond to a message.

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