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Wednesday, May 06, 2015
Colliers International Acquires CASE Commercial Real Estate Partners
Regional Managing Director David Pinsel pledged to grow Colliers International’s North Texas operations when he took the helm in late 2011. He has since recruited key personnel—and now he has engineered the acquisition of CASE Commercial Real Estate Partners, a deal that doubles Colliers’ local presence.
Dallas-based CASE was formed when Tom Sutherland and John Conger acquired GVA Cawley from Dallas real estate investor and developer Bill Cawley in April of 2008. (CASE is an acronym for Conger and Sutherland Enterprises.) The duo has since grown the company to 50 professionals serving both tenants and investors.
Talks began with Sutherland and Conger about nine months ago, Pinsel said.
“Looking around the landscape of DFW companies, CASE had a culture that was similar to ours and everyone in town spoke very highly of Tom and John,” Pinsel said. “I couldn’t find a person in the market who had a bad thing to say about either of them, which is rare in a competitive business like commercial real estate. So we started dancing around and looking at the strategic fit of the companies.”
It was that alignment that made the acquisition particularly compelling, Pinsel said, with CASE having established strongholds in medical office, corporate services, landlord services, and retail sectors. Locally, Colliers has strengths in the industrial sector and in tenant representation. Both firms are active in investment sales, but CASE caters more to private capital, Pinsel said.
The deal takes Colliers from about 45 local brokers to about 80, with more than 180 total employees in Dallas and Fort Worth. CASE will be rebranded as Colliers International, and its Dallas team will move to Colliers’ Uptown office at 1717 McKinney in the coming months.
Sutherland called the merger “a fruitful partnership, built upon a highly aligned set of values and goals.” He said Colliers’ global platform and robust infrastructure will enhance client services, “while continuing to foster the entrepreneurial, hands-on approach we’ve become known for.”
Over the years, CASE has been approached by a number of suitors, including most of the nationals, Conger said. “It wasn’t until learning of Colliers International’s unique culture and commitment to being the best real estate company, coupled with this exciting inflection point in time of Colliers dynamic growth, did the fit seem right.”
The acquisition of CASE is a key win for Pinsel, who says additional buys are in the works. “I hope to pick up a couple more that are accretive to our bottom line and our culture,” he said. “We clearly want to be in that top tier not only in size, but in capability, and are looking for pieces to help us do that. CASE is a big one. The good news for us is it builds momentum. I’ve told my inner circle that this is the first domino to fall. I’m hoping this will make it easier for other firms I’ve been looking at to potentially say yes, if the deal is right.”
Colliers International is a subsidiary of FirstService Corp., which generates about $2.7 billion in annual revenue and has more than 24,000 employees worldwide.