Marcus & Millichap kicked off the firm’s expansion across Canada with the announcement it is opening three Canadian offices. A leading commercial real estate investment services firm in the U.S., the company now has a presence in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver.
Daniel Holmes, who has 10 years hands-on experience in the Toronto commercial real estate market, has been selected to run the day-to-day operations of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Canada Inc. and lead the brokerage in the GTA as its regional manager.
The expansion has been part of the company’s growth plans for a long time and has had a broker of record operating out of a temporary office in Toronto since the fall of 2013, Holmes said.
Toronto, as North America’s fourth-largest city by population, made sense for a northern expansion after the firm opened its Boston office, Holmes said. Vancouver aligns with the firm’s West Coast roots and Calgary’s opening is an acknowledgement of its booming economy.
The firm recognizes the similarities and differences between the Canadian and U.S. markets and will expand appropriately, said Holmes. “We’ll have more than three offices in Canada by next year, perhaps in Montreal, Ottawa or Edmonton, with a total of about 40 brokers in Canada by then.”
“We’re focusing on the long term, and always doing what’s right for our firm and team to grow,” he said. “I believe we’re building something people will feel proud to be a part of.”
Gary Lucas, with the company since 1985 and a vice-president since 1993, will lead the Calgary office. Lucas has directed Marcus & Millichap‘s mid-market expansion since 1995.
“Commercial real estate investors in Canada now have convenient accessibility to a platform with a proven track record of success; not only for investing in Canada’s markets but for investing in competitive markets across the United States as well,” Lucas said in a news release.
Chris Anderson, who has a track record in commercial sales, leasing and brokerage management in Alberta and B.C., will act as Marcus & Millichap’s regional manager in Vancouver.
An investment brokerage platform
“Opening offices in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver is a natural extension of the unique investment brokerage platform we have perfected over the past 43 years throughout the U.S.,” John J. Kerin, Marcus & Millichap‘s president and chief executive officer, said in the news release.
“Our system of matching commercial properties with the largest pool of qualified buyers will benefit our clients in Canada and the U.S. by expanding their acquisition choices as buyers and accessing more qualified investors as sellers.”
The company looks forward to “adding value by bringing our industry-leading research, innovative technology and extensive management support to our agents and clients in Canada,” said Kerin.
Marcus & Millichap claims it is the “best information source and transaction service provider in North America.” It says its Research Services Division is dedicated to cutting-edge market research, producing more than 2,000 research products annually that are fully customized by property type and local market.
The company, founded in 1971, has more than 1,300 brokers in 76 markets operating out of 70 offices across the U.S. and Canada.
In 2013, Marcus & Millichap closed more than 6,600 investment transactions of roughly $23 billion. These included shopping centres, office and industrial buildings, apartment properties, single-tenant net-lease properties, hotels/motels, senior housing facilities, manufactured home communities, self-storage facilities, golf and resort properties and land.
New approach for Canada
The new leader for Marcus & Millichap in Toronto said as the “new kids on the block in Canada,” the company will need to work at educating the market.
Focusing solely on investment sales is a unique approach in commercial real estate, akin to “being the Henry Ford of this business” according to Holmes, making education a necessary component.
“We focus on doing one thing and doing it well,” Homes said. “We’re an under-the-radar kind of firm but looking forward to sharing our expertise with the market.
“The reception from the brokerage community thus far has been overwhelmingly positive. People are curious about who we are and what we do.”