Joey Agree has been named CEO of Agree Realty Corp., the Michigan-based firm that owns and operates 109 properties in 27 states encompassing 3.3 million sq. ft. of space. He will continue to serve as the company’s president and as a member of the board of directors.
Joey Agree had served as the firm’s president and COO and as a member of the board of directors since June 2009. He succeeds his father, Richard Agree, as CEO, a position that the elder Agree had held since before the company’s initial public offering in April 1994. Richard Agree will continue to serve as executive chairman of the board.
Before joining Agree Realty in March 2005, Joey Agree was employed by one of the largest private developers in the Midwest, as director of land acquisitions.
NREI talked to Joey Agree about how he wants to expand the company’s single tenant net lease portfolio and the impact of the fiscal cliff fiasco. An edited version of that interview follows.
NREI: You’ve talked about wanting to grow and diversity the company. How do you want to do that?
Joey Agree: When we talk about diversity I’m speaking about it in three forms. Geographically we’re in 27 states but we’re also focused on diversifying via retail sector. We’ve made acquisitions in 2012 that span 13 different retail sectors. We acquired an LA Fitness in Lake Zurich, Ill. In auto parts, we’ve acquired an Auto Zone in Minneapolis, and in deep discount grocery we’ve acquired two Dollar General Markets as well as an ALDI.
NREI: How does that diversity help position you?
Joey Agree: What is critical to us is that we build a portfolio that we feel is what we call “web resistant.” We’re focused on sectors that really can withstand the historical growth and the future growth of e-commerce. From a static and mobile perspective we are really growing in those sectors and those sectors—deep discount grocery, auto parts and fitness are a key to that. You’re not going to work out on your phone. We’re focused on those sectors where we can more accurately predict the future infringement upon sales from the web.
NREI: The economy is starting to recover and retail is starting to do better; how does that impact investors’ moods about single-tenant net lease retail?
Joey Agree: I think investors, both traditional REIT investors and non-traditional REIT investors have always had a significant thirst for yield and the net lease REIT space really provides significant opportunity for yield. I think REIT investors obviously have the benefit of skilled capital management teams as well as underlying portfolios that provide for diversification. From a company’s standpoint we have tenants who report sales so we understand how sales are doing in many sectors and they are seeing improved sales, especially with the early holiday reports coming out.
But the net lease space is a unique creature of real estate. When you talk about the macroeconomic times there are a significant amount of investors who move into net lease when interest rates are low like today. Net lease corresponds more with monetary policy than fiscal policy. A lack of yield in other investments benefits REITs that pay high dividends and have strong yields.
NREI: What impact do you see coming from the fiscal cliff fallout as we move into 2013?
Joey Agree: When people talk about the fiscal cliff, you really have to take it a step further and ask if a potential fall or jump off the fiscal cliff affect interest rates over the short, medium or long term? Or will it affect the ability to acquire capital? That is more of a tangential effect than a dramatic decrease in spending.
JLL Picks New COO, Promotes Other Execs and Buys Firm
Jones Lang LaSalle promoted Kristin Mueller to the post of COO. She will be responsible for executing the firm’s expanded services platform, ensuring consistency in standards across the firm’s shopping center portfolio as well as driving results and efficiencies across the business. She will continue to lead the business development team and will also oversee the client accounting, property management and specialty leasing departments.
Mueller, has more than 27 years of experience in the retail industry, with particular expertise in managing diverse property types across the United States for third-party clients that include lenders, special servicers, developers, institutional investors and private owners of retail and mixed-use properties. Prior to her tenure at JLL, she was associated with Urban Shopping Centers, Inc., where she held a variety of positions including general manager of shopping centers.
John Bemis, formerly director of leasing and development, was promoted to retail market lead for Atlanta/Southeast region and will oversee the JLL retail platform, which includes tenant representation, landlord representation services, including leasing, property management, accounting services and development across the region.
Geno Coradini was also promoted to the retail market lead for Dallas/Southwest region and will have similar responsibilities as Bemis. He joined the firm in 2008, shortly after JLL acquired The Standard Group. With more than 15 years of retail real estate, he has extensive experience in field execution and corporate management at the regional and national level.
Jones Lang LaSalle also acquired The Apartment Group LTD, a market-leading multifamily brokerage firm in Dallas.
The Apartment Group’s founder and president, Jeff Price, will join as a managing director and lead the team, as well as the firm’s overall multifamily platform in Texas. Other Apartment Group professionals joining JLL include William Simmons, who joins as senior vice president and David Fersing, who comes as vice president. Susan Gosslee, Alison Rutland and Janet McEowen also will be joining the firm
Price has nearly 30 years of experience in commercial real estate, including brokerage, development, asset management and property management as well as public accounting. Since founding the Apartment Group, Price has closed nearly $5 billion in multifamily transactions.
Seldin Co. Names New President
Bob Dean has been promoted to CEO of the Seldin Co. Dean has been with the firm since 1991 and most recently served as executive vice president.
In his new role, Dean will provide strategic direction to the company’s 300-plus employees who manage more than 10,400 apartment units stretching from South Dakota to Texas. He will also oversee the company’s efforts to expand its growing property management portfolio work with Seldin Co.’s business partners World Group Commercial Real Estate and Metonic Real Estate Services.
Binswanger Promotes President in Philly
Binswanger, a global real estate solutions firm, has promoted Scott Gabrielsen to the position of president – commercial real estate division for the Philadelphia metropolitan region.
Gabrielsen has been on staff at Binswanger and working in the Philadelphia region since 1993. There, he has been responsible for landlord and tenant representation as well as the acquisition, disposition and leasing of office properties.
CBRE Hotels Hires New SVP
CBRE Group Inc. welcomed Bernard Van der Lande as a senior vice president for the company’s hotels group.
Van der Lande joins CBRE Hotels from hotel brokerage Hodges Ward Elliott, where he was a senior vice president.
During his four years there, Van der Lande completed a number of significant transactions, including Lodgian Inc.’s privatization and capitalization of the 669-key YOTEL New York and the sale of The Fairmont Dallas.
VP of Sales Joins Multifamily Market Research Firm
J Turner Research hired Mindy Price as vice president of sales for the market research and customer satisfaction firm that exclusively serves the multifamily industry. In this newly created role, Price will head up national sales and business development. Additionally, Price will be charged with the ongoing training and development of the J Turner Research sales force.
Prior to joining J Turner Research, Price was the executive vice president of Liberty Real Estate Advisors, where she oversaw all aspects of the business process for the Houston-based real estate investment and investor educational services firm.
Arbor Names New VP of FHA Lending in Ohio
Arbor Commercial Mortgage LLC named Matthew Carey vice president of FHA Lending in the company’s Cleveland office.
Carey will oversee Arbor’s daily FHA Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP) and LEAN (seniors housing/healthcare) loan production, including the coordination of its underwriting strategy and the integration of Arbor’s Bridge-to-HUD loan program. He will also oversee the continued expansion of Arbor’s regional FHA underwriting staff.
Carey has more than 10 years of experience in commercial lending and underwriting and has successfully underwritten and submitted more than $200 million in LEAN and MAP applications and has closed more than $100 million since 2009.
Previous to Arbor, Carey held the position of senior FHA underwriter and then FHA deputy chief underwriter at KeyBank Real Estate Capital.
Real Capital Analytics Names EMEA Pro
Real Capital Analytics appointed Simon Mallinson executive managing director of its EMEA operations. The company entered the European markets five years ago and has engaged Mallinson to reinforce its growth and lead its London-based EMEA team.
C&W Hires New Florida Pro
Cushman & Wakefield brought on Paul A. Waters as senior managing director and market leader of the company’s South Florida operations.
Based in Miami, Waters will oversee the firm’s overall strategic business objectives and day-to-day activities for South Florida, including the Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach markets.
Waters comes to C&W from C III realty’s NAI Global, where, as an executive managing director of industrial services, he led business development efforts for transaction management services in the Americas, focusing on client portfolio optimization and utilization.
Colliers Welcomes Pro to Princeton Office
Colliers International New Jersey hired Thomas Romano as the executive managing director to head the Princeton, N.J. office.
Romano comes to Colliers from Newmark Grubb Knight Frank's Princeton office, where he was a managing principal. In his career he has completed transactions totaling more than 3.5 million sq. ft. with an aggregate value in excess of $350 million.
Gebroe-Hammer Names Two Managing Directors
Gebroe-Hammer Associates named David Oropeza and Joseph Brecher as managing directors.
Since joining the firm in 1986, Oropeza consistently has been among the firm’s top sales brokers. He has overseen Gebroe-Hammer’s brokerage activity throughout Northern New Jersey, where he has emerged as an inner-city market expert. Throughout his career, he has sold more than $2 billion in commercial real estate, including over 20,000 multifamily units.
Brecher has supervised the firm’s multifamily investment sales activity throughout Central New Jersey and the Philadelphia region. During his tenure, he has closed more than $2 billion in multifamily transactions throughout New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.
Kavel Joins Greystone in Senior Housing
Greystone hired Scott Kavel as a managing director with the firm’s seniors housing group.
Kavel brings more than 20 years of experience to Greystone and has arranged $5 billion in seniors housing finance. He will work closely with the current team to develop and expand their client relationships and will originate new seniors housing business.
Coldwell Banker Welcomes New Florida Associate
Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Ralston Dantzler Realty in Lakeland, Fla. hired Mikey Seney as a sales associate.
Seney has a strong 20-year background in commercial real estate as an appraiser with experience appraising all types of properties, such as commercial, industrial, vacant land, residential subdivisions, and more.
Associate Joins Scheer Partners
Scheer Partners welcomed Kevin Rosenberg as a commercial leasing associate for the Rockville, Md.-based company that provides commercial real estate services for the health science industry in the Washington, D.C. and Baltimore metropolitan areas.
Prior to joining Scheer Partners, Rosenberg served as a financial adviser for about six years with The Meltzer Group and The Insurance Exchange. There, he focused his practice on helping business owners comply with new U.S. Department of Labor regulations concerning ERISA-covered pension plans.
NAI Everest Hires Scholder
NAI Everest added Ronald Scholder to the firm.
Scholder’s commercial real estate career spans more than three decades and has worked with both corporate accounts and real estate investors.
Shor Joins S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co.
S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co. brought on Nathan A. Shor to the firm’s Richmond, Va. office as vice president, retail brokerage and development.
Shor has been in the commercial real estate industry since 1982, when he started in the Raleigh, North Carolina office of Shor & Associates, a family business that started practicing commercial real estate in 1970.
Shor worked in a satellite office until SHOR Real Estate Inc. was founded in January of 2000.
Merit Property Management Buys Mar West Real Estate
Merit Property Management, a FirstService Residential Management company acquired Mar West Real Estate, a commercial property management services provider in the Western U.S.
The acquisition adds 170 commercial property associations with 50 million sq. ft. of office, industrial and medical properties to Merit’s current portfolio of 370 associations. John Strockis, the president of Mar West Real Estate, has become the CEO of Mar West and will oversee all aspects of the company’s operations.
Pro Joins Investment Committee at Stockbridge
Tuba Malinowski, a managing director at Stockbridge Capital Group, has been added as a member of the company’s core and value-added investment committee.
Malinowski has a 24-year history in the real estate industry across a full spectrum of roles, including portfolio management, acquisitions, dispositions, asset management and client relations. She joined Stockbridge in 2010 and currently serves as the portfolio manager for the firm's open-end core fund, which operates out of Stockbridge's Atlanta office. She played a key role in the formation and strategy development of the fund.
CBRE Buys Two Atlanta Companies
CBRE Group Inc. acquired the commercial real estate services businesses of Atlanta-based Resource Real Estate Partners LLC and TPA Realty Services LLC.
The acquisition will add more than 13 million sq. ft. of office and industrial assets to CBRE’s Atlanta property management portfolio as well as key leasing and investment sales professionals who serve clients throughout the region. The development operations of RREP/TPA were not included in the acquisition.
The approximately 70 employees from the RREP/TPA businesses will be integrated into CBRE’s existing offices in the Atlanta region. These professionals include office and industrial leasing and sales brokers, property managers, building engineers and support staff.
Marketing Pro Joins BNE Real Estate Group
BNE Real Estate Group, the parent company of homebuilder Millennium Homes, hired Kristina Hedden as vice president of marketing.
She will focus, in particular, on BNE’s growing portfolio of luxury rental properties currently being constructed along the New Jersey Gold Coast. Hedden was previously employed at The Marketing Directors, where she managed the day-to-day marketing programs of more than 15 high-profile residential developments in the New York City metropolitan area.
RILA Promotes LaBruno and Hires Retail Operations Director
The Retail Industry Leaders Association hired Garth Gasse to serve as director of retail operations, asset protection and Lisa LaBruno has been promoted to senior vice president for retail operations.
LaBruno joined RILA in 2010 as vice president for loss prevention and legal affairs. In her new capacity, she will oversee RILA’s operational efforts, which bring together executives from across the retail enterprise, including supply chain and asset protection, to address challenges and advance the retail industry. LaBruno will also play a major role in the planning of RILA’s educational and networking conferences.
Gasse joins RILA following 14 years with Toys R Us/Babies R Us, most recently as Regional Asset Protection Manager. In his new role Gasse will work with loss prevention executives from across the retail industry to identify common challenges and leading practices.