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CBRE Buys U.S. Equities To Bolster its Chicago Presence

Adds 400 U.S. Equities Staff Along With Plum Leasing and Management Assignments
July 16, 2014
In a move to deepen its relationships with major property owners and expand its presence in Chicago, CBRE Group, Inc. acquired U.S. Equities Realty LLC and will combine its Chicago area operations with those of the 36-year-old boutique to expand its leasing and management portfolio in the market. Terms of the deal, which does not include U.S. Equities' Latin American operations, were not disclosed.

Founded in 1978, U.S. Equities has a staff of approximately 400 in Chicago and all have been offered positions with CBRE. The firm has leasing and management contracts for 17 million square feet of property in the greater Chicago area, including such high profile buildings as Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower.) It also has extensive listings along Chicago's prestigious Michigan Avenue.

U.S. Equities' real estate service lines are structured under four groups: Real Estate Consulting, which includes advisory, brokerage and tenant representation; Asset Management, which includes property and facility management and landlord leasing; Financial and Investment, which includes acquisition, disposition and financing; and Development.

Bob Wislow, the chairman and CEO of U.S. Equities, was named Chairman of CBRE Chicago. He will join Executive Managing Director Chris Connelly, who oversees CBRE's operations in the region.

"CBRE’s global platform, along with its extensive service offering and broad expertise, will expand and enhance our ability to serve clients - in Chicago and around the world - and to provide additional growth opportunities for our professionals," said Wislow in a statement announcing the company's acquisition. "In turn, the development/program management, owner’s representation and consulting services we provide will strengthen the services CBRE can provide to its clients."

With a real estate career that began in 1971, Wislow is among those credited with bringing a more sophisticated tenant representation approach to traditional brokerage services from his background with IBM.

Two U.S. Equities principals were named vice chairmen of CBRE Chicago: Camille Julmy, who founded the firm with Wislow, heads the firm's investment and financing services and oversees its asset management division as well as participates in major urban retail leasing assignments; and Nancy Pacher, an attorney who has served as the firm’s president and COO since 1993 and has gained industry recognition for her representation of major office space users.

Other members of U.S. Equities’ senior leadership, Katie Scott and Marty Stern, will join CBRE as senior managing directors. The acquisition will bring CBRE's Chicago-area office to 1,600 people.

Cal Frese, CBRE's CEO for the Americas, said, "Nancy, Camille, Katie, Marty, Bob and their colleagues have an excellent reputation for high-quality work and a strong client roster. Combining our two firms’ existing strengths in Chicago will further enhance our market leader position."

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