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January 11, 2011 
Empire Builders

Congrats to those who've been promoted at our great sponsor The John Buck Company. Jack Buck III is the newest principal, and Patrick Buck and Matt Means are the newest SVPs. For a complete list, see ad at right.

Former Grubb & Ellis CEO Mark Rose believes lots of global real estate companies lean toward a specific city: CBRE in Los Angeles, JLL in Chicago, and C&W in New York. So when the took the helm at Canadian full-service firm Avison Young, his strategy was to create a company with a non-city-specific culture.
Mark Rose, Michael McKiernan, Jim Solomon, Earl Webb
In the five quarters since the company opend its US offices in Chicago, it's grown to 110 American employees in multiple cities. Veterans like Mike McKiernan (former managing director of C&W in Chicago), Jim Solomon, who joined from his own company (he formerly worked at Trizec), and 30-year JLL veteran Earl Webb are heading up the flagship US office. Earl says each member of the team had been successful at a larger company and was looking to build something of his own. With 95% of the shares, every Avison Young partner owns stock in the company; they feel like they're answering to themselves instead of shareholders. About 80% of the company's profits are paid out in dividends to shareholders, and some of the profit is reinvested in technology. Avison Young's blog launches at the end of this month.
Earl Webb, Mark rose, Jim Solomon, Michael McKiernan
The company has opened US offices in Boston, DC, Atlanta, Chicago, New York, LA, and San Fran, and has eyes on opening one in Dallas. They're striving to have 500 US employees, and gain a foothold in Europe by the end of 2011. With a strong presence in industrial in the Chicago submarkets, thanks to Mike, and capital markets in the US, headed up by Jim, the team is looking to acquire or hire some tenant rep and CBD office experts to round out its Chicago presence.

Net Lease Team Signs Five
Mark Goldberg, Tom Fritz
The Mid-America team of Mark Goldberg and Tom Fritz sold five net-leased building in the last month of the year, mostly to all-cash buyers. The team had more than double the sales it had in 2009, thanks to fresh demand from individuals seeking secure income streams with higher yields compared to their cash accounts, Tom says. The five properties included an 86k SF Kohl's in Onalaska, Wisc. For $7.25M, a 12k SF Social Security office in Indianapolis for $3.28M, a 59k SF ground lease for a Fifth Third Bank in Orland Park, a ground lease for a Kohl's in Lebanon, OH, and an LA Fitness in Minneapolis for $8.6M.
Mark Goldberg, Tom Fritz
Demand for investments has been growing, driving a 100 bps drop in cap rates over the past 12 months. With little new construction on the market, tenants are backfilling spaces, decreasing retail vacancies across the country. Mark and Tom tell us they're still at only about 70% of their peak sales levels in 2007. They're expecting continued growth this year.

Libertyville Building Sold
2401 Commerce

VK Industrial I, a fund of Venture One, has closed on a 79k SF flex facility at 2401-2441 Commerce Dr in Libertyville. The building was purchased from Lincoln Commerce Center Properties, repped by Converse Capital's Patrick Sullivan. It's 43% leased to A-S Medication Solutions. The remaining 45k SF, which is divisible down to 10k SF, is being marketed by Paine/Wetzel for lease to both office and flex/warehouse users. The building will undergo minor renovations, including parking lot resurfacing, exterior painting, as well as office and warehouse remodeling.


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