The trend of consolidation in the U.S. commercial brokerage industry continues, with Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (“NGKF” or "Newmark"), one of the largest commercial real estate service businesses in the U.S., and part of BGC Partners, Inc., announcing BGC’s agreement to acquire Cornish & Carey Commercial. With approximately $135 million in revenues in 2012 and over 275 brokers, Cornish & Carey is one of Northern California’s preeminent full-service commercial real estate companies. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. BGC expects the transaction will be immediately accretive upon closing. It is expected to be completed by the middle of 2014.
Cornish & Carey has been one of the dominant forces in Northern California and Silicon Valley real estate since 1935, and significantly bolstered its position in the market when it partnered with NGKF in 2010.
The past few years have brought a flurry of activity for NGKF. In 2011, BGC Partners, an inter-dealer brokerage firm, bought the commercial real estate services provider, then known as Newman Knight Frank. In 2012, the new entity purchased rival Grubb & Ellis Inc. out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy. NREI published an interview with BGC Chairman and CEO Howard W. Lutnick in June of 2012, which discussed the rationale behind the acquisitions and future growth plans.
NGKF’s growth has been part of a broader trend of mergers and acquisitions in the commercial real estate industry as firms try to offer a multitude of services to clients around the globe.
In a statement about NGKF’s acquisition of Cornish & Carey, NGKF CEO Barry M. Gosin said, “Our partnership with Cornish & Carey has been tremendously successful. We now have an even greater ability to provide clients in the important Northern California marketplace the complete array of NGKF's services including site selection, leasing advisory, facilities management, property management, project management, investment sales, global corporate services, and valuation among others. A primary driver of NGKF's growth is acquiring spectacular talent in key markets. Cornish & Carey's commitment to serving clients, and its culture and performance, align perfectly with NGKF’s client-centric service and growth model.”
Cornish & Carey Commercial President and CEO Chuck Seufferlein has been named president of NGKF’s Western Region. Scott Carey, carrying on the firm's family name, remains chairman and general counsel.
In a statement, Seufferlein said, "Cornish & Carey is a trusted name among decision makers in technology, life sciences, finance and other sectors in Northern California and Silicon Valley. As Newmark Cornish & Carey, our clients will benefit enormously from the exceptional breadth of services that NGKF offers globally."
“This is an exciting time for our firm, our clients and our brokers," he added. “Cornish & Carey originally partnered with NGKF because we recognized the value in joining forces with a firm that has built both a dominant New York presence and extensive international reach. Our successful partnership with NGKF, BGC’s strong balance sheet, and BGC’s and NGKF’s outstanding relationships with top-tier corporations and financial institutions, are compelling reasons to join together. The resources to invest and grow, along with the unparalleled expertise and opportunity that exists across NGKF, BGC and its affiliated businesses, are unrivaled in the industry.”
According to Gosin added, “Coupled with NGKF's strong Southern California presence, this union solidifies our ability to offer an unequaled scope of services throughout the state and underscores our commitment to providing exceptional resources to the commercial real estate market coast to coast."
Newmark Cornish & Carey offices are located in Emeryville, Hayward, Marin, Palo Alto, Pleasanton, Roseville, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Rosa and Walnut Creek. Its full range of services includes tenant and landlord representation, investment sales, finance, global corporate services, and property and facilities management, complementing NGKF’s outstanding global services business and the unparalleled capital markets capabilities through BGC’s relationships with Cantor Fitzgerald and Cantor Commercial Real Estate (CCRE).