Over the past year, Calgary’s Coril Group of Companies acquired Tonko Realty Advisors Ltd. and Redcliff Realty Group and combined their geographically distinct businesses to create a national, integrated, commercial real estate investment and management company.
That merger of western and eastern Canadian companies now has a new name, Triovest Realty Advisors Inc. offering core services that include investment management, development and redevelopment services as well as property management.
William Briscoe, Triovest’s Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer, said the combination of the two real estate firms gives clients “size and scale. We are able to do things on a broader level, bringing market intelligence to a national level, sharing best practices and creating an environment of employer of choice.”
Triovest has more than 56 million square feet of assets under management and a combined asset value of almost $10 billion, split roughly 40% office and an 30% slice each in retail and industrial property classes.
Reflecting the former base of operations of Redcliff and Tonko, Triovest’s two largest markets are Ontario and Alberta, comprising approximately 50% and 35% of their business. The newly merged firm has eight offices in major cities across the country and a staff complement of about 830.
A New, Major Player in Commercial Real Estate
Triovest touts itself as “a significant competitor in the Canadian commercial real estate market.” Major competitors for Triovest among full-service real estate advisory services include the likes of Bentall Kennedy and GWL Realty Advisors. “Of course we compete with everybody for product,” said Briscoe.
The Triovest executive added that commercial real estate has been “competitive for many years” as an asset class, attractive as an investment alterative to pension funds and investment firms “and we are certainly seeing a lot of evidence of that with pretty much all assets that come to market.”
Canada has proven to be a safe haven for real estate investment and he expects that will not change anytime soon. “I think it is still deemed such in the current environment and with a couple more years of (economic) volatility, Canada has been stable and our real estate market has been a very good alternative the last several years and we expect that to continue.”
Triovest has no immediate plans to expand beyond Canada’s borders. “For the time being, we feel our efforts are best spent in the Canadian geography,” said Briscoe. “We do see expanding that reach but for the time being we want to establish a dominant position here in Canada.”
Triovest is a privately owned company and Briscoe, a former executive with GWL Realty until last year, expects that to continue.
Calgary-based Coril Holdings Group’s original roots in construction and development in Canada date back more than 113 years. Coril has “diverse assets and business interests throughout the Americas in railroad maintenance, mining, real estate ownership and development, corporate and private health and wellness and equity investments.”
The success of Coril was the life’s work of Calgary business legend Frederick Charles Mannix, who played a major role in the building of much of Canada’s infrastructure (highways, pipelines, mines, dams, railways and airports) through the middle part of the last century.
Mannix passed his business empire to his two sons, Frederick and Ronald in the 1970s and each now have their own operating companies. Ronald heads Coril Holdings as chairman while his brother heads up Mancal Corporation.