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More Global Brokerage Consolidation?


From Newmark to Grubb to Studley to now, possibly, Cassidy Turley, commercial real estate brokerages have gone through a wave of consolidation in recent years. According to Crain's, Texas-based private equity company TPG Capital is in talks to acquire DC-based Cassidy to create a real estate services powerhouse along with DTZ, which TPG purchased in June. (A Cassidy Turley rep had no comment; we snapped CEO Joe Stettinius in LA earlier this year.) If it closes, the deal would represent a continuation of brokerages seeking a larger global presence to remain sustainable. And if going global isn't in your strategy, you'd better have a localized, nimble one instead, says Bruce Baschuk, founder of the DC-based J Street Companies. 

Here's Savills CEO Jeremy Helsby with Studley CEO Mitch Steir after the firms' $260M merger in May. Those firms said at the time they joined forces to fill holes in each other's business lines: tenant rep shop Studley has 25 offices in the US but little presence overseas, while Savills has 27,000 employees, mostly in Europe and Asia Pacific, though only 0.8% of the firm's revenues come from the US. Taking TPG up on its offer could do the same for Cassidy, one broker we spoke with said, as well as give the firm a major capital infusion. Firms that don't have as robust investment sales and property management lines as Cassidy may not have many suitors, the broker said, since brokerage revenues can be inconsistent.