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Michael Casolo Named Northwest Client Services Leader for Jones Lang LaSalle

Michael Casolo Named Northwest Client Services Leader for Jones Lang LaSalle

Jones Lang LaSalle has named Michael Casolo to lead client services for the firm’s corporate solutions division in the Northwest. Jones Lang LaSalle’s corporate solutions teams assist a wide range of corporate occupiers in managing the cost, performance and efficiency of the real estate they own and occupy.

Casolo, a managing director based in the firm’s Palo Alto, Calif. office, has provided cost, performance and efficiency solutions to Jones Lang LaSalle’s mid-sized corporate clients in the region since 2009. He now broadens his role to lead similar real estate-based solutions to some of the firm’s largest multinational clients.

NREI spoke with Michael Casolo about how Jones Lang LaSalle individualizes solutions for domestic and multinational clients.

An edited excerpt of that interview follows.

NREI: What types of cost, performance and efficiency solutions have you brought to the firm's mid-sized corporate clients?

Casolo: We provide a variety of process improvements, technology and subject matter expertise to help our clients maximize their CRE [commercial real estate] and facilities organization and initiatives with their core business goals and objectives. Where we are a bit different from our competitors is in developing a completely flexible and scalable offering that provides access to this level of service to companies of all sizes and at different stages of development. Recognizing that “one size fits one,” our solutions are tailored to our clients’ needs. This approach has allowed us to see substantial growth across the U.S. and in most industry verticals, but with the strongest gains in technology, life sciences and industrial multi-nationals.

NREI: How will you expand that to larger multinational corporations?

Casolo: The scalable nature of our offering, coupled with our position as an industry-leading global corporate solutions and outsourcing firm will enable us to grow our business with larger multinationals. The fundamentals are the same. The differences lie more in a company’s stage of development than they do in company size. JLL’s global strength is another differentiator that benefits multi-nationals. Our business is fairly evenly distributed between the Americas, EMEA [Europe, the Middle East and Africa] and the Asia Pacific. This balanced platform supports our mid-sized clients in their international expansions as well as our largest clients with a vision to emerging markets such as Brazil and Africa.

NREI: How can you help these corporations prosper in tough economic times, both in the US and around the world?

Casolo: We are able to bring to our clients the collective experience of hundreds of national, regional and global corporate CRE partnerships that have been through all phases of the real estate and business development cycles. Survival—and prosperity—in tough times require “win-win” partnerships where everyone on the team is rowing in the same direction and experience is at the helm.

NREI: Do you see a lot of outsourcing in these multi-national corporations?

Casolo: We continue to see outsourcing as the service delivery model of choice for multi-nationals. The primary reason for this is that as firms like this grow, and especially as they become global, they often find they have the need to do more with smaller internal staffs.

NREI: Is outsourcing a trend you see slowing down, speeding up or maintaining?

Casolo: I would characterize it as evolving. While many companies are looking at outsourcing for the first time, some outsourcing relationships are in their second, third or even fourth generation. Companies continue to consider alternative solutions such as preferred-provider models, integrator models and multi-partner models. Each of these have unique advantages and disadvantages. There is no single ‘best’ solution – the ‘best’ solution is the one that has the highest probability of achieving the corporation's goals with the least risk.

NREI: What have you done in California that can be replicated for companies with a worldwide presence?

Casolo: In the West, we work with a lot of fast growth organizations—companies that move from college campus to start-up to global in shorter timeframes than could have even been imagined 10 years ago. We have supported these accelerated business models with resources and solutions that can grow as quickly as the core business is growing. This rapid speed-to-market response to our West Coast clients can benefit companies located anywhere—particularly when they all have to compete in a dynamic global economy.

W.P. Carey & Co. Names Co-Heads of Global Investments

W.P. Carey & Co. LLC has named Jason Fox and Gino Sabatini as co-heads of global investments at the investment firm.

Fox will oversee the firm's international acquisitions activities, including investment teams based in the firm's European and Asian offices as well as business development initiatives in other international markets. Sabatini will oversee North American acquisitions activities. Fox and Sabatini will continue to be based in the firm's New York office.

Fox has been with W. P. Carey since 2002 and has served in various positions of increasing responsibility since then. Sabatini joined W. P. Carey in 2000.

The firm also announced the departure of H. Cabot Lodge, III, who had served as head of European investments. The European team will continue to be led by senior investment officers Jeffrey LeFleur, Jennifer Lucas, and Arvi Luoma.

Richard A. Buck to Expand Morgan Group’s Southeast Development Team

The Morgan Group has hired veteran real estate developer Richard A. Buck as southeast regional vice president, based in south Florida.

Buck will source multifamily development prospects for Morgan primarily in major Florida markets, Atlanta and the Carolinas.

For nearly 20 years, Buck has served in various leadership positions with nationally recognized multifamily developers, including Crescent Resources, LLC, Post Properties, Colonial Properties Trust, Altman Development, and Ginn Clubs and Resorts. During his career, Buck has overseen the acquisition, design, entitlement, construction and/or development of more than 6,000 multifamily units and 1,500 single-family lots across four states.

New Posts at Jones Lang LaSalle Offices in Atlanta and New York

Shan Gastineau will take on the role as a managing director for Jones Lang LaSalle Atlanta’s corporate finance and net lease (CFNL) practice on the East Coast.

Gastineau was previously a senior vice president with the firm’s tenant representation group. He will expand the firm’s ability to serve corporate and single-tenant investor clients in the eastern United States.

Gastineau joined the Staubach Company in 2002, coming to Jones Lang LaSalle when the firm merged with Staubach in 2008. Recently, Gastineau completed more than $300 million in transaction volume for occupier and investor clients and received the firm’s top achiever award for revenue producers from 2004 to 2011. Prior to that, he was vice president for Atlanta-based LCI, a facilities management startup, where he was responsible for new market growth.

He currently serves on the board of the Atlanta Mission, a ministry serving the homeless since 1938, and is actively involved with Leader Impact Group and Priority Associates, organizations that help business leaders to move beyond success to significance.

Gastineau will be joined by Senior Associate Katie Madson, who began her career with Jones Lang LaSalle’s valuation advisory practice in Madrid in 2008. She has been located in the Atlanta office, also with the tenant representation group, since 2009.

In Jones Lang LaSalle’s New York office, Mark Marasciullo has been hired as a managing director to serve on the firm's national investor client team—a group of established facilitators and relationship managers for Jones Lang LaSalle’s largest institutional investor clients.

Marasciullo will work closely with property management, agency leasing, and capital markets teams—across office, industrial, retail and multifamily product types—on a local and national level to collectively focus all the firm’s resources on solutions for investor clients and prospects.

He comes to Jones Lang LaSalle from New Canaan Partners LLC, in New York, which he founded in 2006. He is the company's managing principal, and oversaw the acquisition of several assets located in Manhattan. In addition, New Canaan Partners was engaged by several institutional commercial real estate investors as an outside asset management and workout/restructuring advisor.

PREI Raises $568M for New Seniors Housing Fund and Hires Principal

Prudential Real Estate Investors completed the final close for its fourth senior housing fund and hired Steve Blazejewski as a principal on the seniors housing team to expand the group’s capabilities.

Senior Housing Partners IV brings the total amount of discretionary capital secured from institutional investors to $568 million. This is the largest senior housing fund for the firm.

Before joining PREI, Blazejewski worked for Health Care REIT Inc., where he was vice president of seniors housing, and as a vice president with CSH LLC, an affiliate of The Carlyle Group.

Avison Young Opens Third California Office, names Nick Slonek Principal and Managing Director

Avison Young has opened a new office in San Francisco, naming Nick Slonek as a principal and managing director of the Northern California region.

Slonek will focus on overseeing the growth and development of the company’s presence throughout Northern California, servicing new and existing clients. He was most recently a principal and senior vice president in the San Francisco office of Cornish & Carey Commercial Newmark Knight Frank.

Slonek brings to Avison Young 25 years of experience in the commercial real estate industry. Primarily focusing on corporate tenant representation on a local, national and international basis, Slonek has represented more than 10 million sq. ft. of office tenants during his career. Slonek’s record of public service includes his services as a senior member of The Guardsmen, a group that raises money for underprivileged children.

Lee & Associates Hires Two Executive Managing Partners

Lee & Associates has hired two executive managing partners, bringing the total number of brokers at Lee’s New York office to 30.

Dennis Someck comes to Lee after 10 years at George Comfort & Sons, most recently as an executive managing director. For a decade prior to that he was at Collins Tuttle & Company, most recently as a senior vice president. Someck has completed more than 800 tenant representation assignments and has represented companies including Anna Sui Corp., Vitech Systems Group, and The Marwood Group.

Mitchell Kunikoff comes to Lee NYC from a 10-year period at George Comfort & Sons; before that was a senior vice president at Collins, Tuttle & Company for more than 10 years. Kunikoff’s wide-ranging client list includes Gotham Bank of New York, Spector Group, FedEx Kinko’s, and The Seaport Group. He specializes in acquisition and disposition of space for office landlords and tenants.

Ryan Good Named VP of Leasing/Sales at Etkin

Etkin Johnson Group has named Ryan Good vice president of leasing/sales. Good will head the company’s marketing efforts for its 7.5-million-sq.-ft commercial real estate portfolio.

Etkin Johnson has also acquired significant land holdings in Denver’s Northwest Corridor, which are being offered for sale or build-to-suit facilities.

Good previously served as a vice president at the Denver office of CBRE Worldwide. While there, he participated in over 360 transactions totaling 6.7 million sq. ft. and nearly $233 million.

In 2010 and 2011, Good was named a Denver Business Journal Heavy Hitter finalist. He was also named a finalist for the NAIOP Broker of the Year award in 2011. Good is the chair of the associate board for the Food Bank of the Rockies and a mentor for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

David Robinov Joins Ackman-Ziff

David I. Robinov has joined Ackman-Ziff Real Estate Group as managing director in the sales division.

Robinov joins the firm with more than 25 years experience in commercial real estate finance and sales. He will be leading Ackman-Ziff's direct sales effort with a primary role in the retail sales platform. Robinov will also help expand the firm into office building sales and other property types to complement Ackman-Ziff's hospitality sales practice.

Robinov previously enjoyed a 20-year career at Eastdil Secured as co-director of its retail transaction team, specializing in the recapitalization of major shopping center assets nationwide. For the past three years, he served as senior vice president of acquisitions at Acadia Realty Trust, where he sourced, analyzed and structured investments in on/off-market retail properties for the REIT and its various opportunity funds.

Oak Grove Capital to Open Columbus Office

Brian T. Kelleher has joined St. Paul-based Oak Grove Capital and will open an office in Columbus, Ohio.

Kelleher will be responsible for the firm’s FHA platform and will lead its growth by establishing new offices and adding experienced team members nationwide.

In the past two years the company has more than doubled its agency and GSE loan volume with closings of $825 million in 2010 and $1.7 billion in 2011. The company is planning for additional growth in 2012, particularly with its increased focus on FHA lending.

Kelleher has been involved with FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac financing for more than 23 years.

Marcus & Millichap Names Senior Director of National Retail Group

Kirk L. Trammell has been named senior director of Marcus & Millichap’s national retail group in Palo Alto, Calif.

Trammell joined Marcus & Millichap in June 1989. During his career, Trammell has closed more than $1 billion in commercial property transactions.

Two Partners Join Hunton & Williams

Hunton & Williams named Carl F. Schwartz and Laurie A. Grasso as partners with the firm’s capital finance and real estate team.

Schwartz will be chair of the New York real estate group, focusing on real estate development, private equity and opportunity funds and structured finance transactions. Grasso concentrates on real estate private equity funds, development, joint ventures and debt investments.

Schwartz and Grasso come to Hunton & Williams from Herrick, Feinstein LLP. Schwartz, who chaired Herrick’s real estate department for 10 years, represents commercial real estate owners, developers and lenders, including REITs and private equity funds, in local, national and international transactions.

New Chairman and President at RED Capital Group

The founder, chairman and CEO of RED Capital Group is retiring and the company has selected two team members to take the company’s reins.

William E. Roberts came out of retirement in 2010 to lead the acquisition of RED from PNC. The company will now be led by Mark C. Beisler, who will serve as president, and Mike Moran, who will assume the role of chairman.

Under their leadership, RED will continue to expand its presence and reputation in the multifamily, seniors housing, and heath care finance arenas. Beisler has been an employee of RED and its predecessor businesses since 1986 and most recently served as CEO of Red Mortgage Capital LLC, a position which he will continue to hold. Moran served as CEO of ORIX USA’s real estate business, ORIX Capital Markets and head of ORIX Corporate Development. Moran will maintain his corporate development responsibilities with ORIX.

Arbor Names Originators in Philadelphia and Birmingham

Arbor Commercial Mortgage has appointed two originators for the company’s offices in Philadelphia and Birmingham, Ala.

Phillip Gause is the new director of Arbor’s Philadelphia office, and Vincent Langan is now the director of its Birmingham branch. Both Gause and Langan are responsible for originating loans nationwide using Arbor’s complete multifamily product portfolio with a special focus on Fannie Mae DUS, Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and bridge loan transactions.

Gause has eight years of diversified experience in the commercial real estate finance business, most recently as a client manager with J.P. Morgan Chase Bank. There, he was responsible for creating and maintaining long-term, sponsor-based commercial real estate lending relationships within the Philadelphia area with a specific focus on multifamily and mixed-use assets.

Langan has a decade of diversified experience in the commercial real estate business, including his most recent appointment as assistant vice president of Beech Street Capital’s loan origination office in Birmingham. There, he focused on the origination of debt for multifamily properties, manufactured home communities, self-storage facilities and office and retail properties.

Dwayne Doherty to Head Corporate Communications at The Rockerfeller Group

Dwayne Doherty will lead The Rockefeller Group International Inc.’s corporate communications office as vice president, based in New York.

Doherty will oversee all corporate communications activities for the company, raise awareness of its properties and its development and investment activities on a global basis. He will also coordinate the communications efforts of its regional offices and business lines.

Over the past decade, Doherty was a senior managing director of corporate communications with Cushman & Wakefield. There, he spearheaded several prominent communications initiatives, including the firm’s first quarterly news conference on the Manhattan market in 2002, the appointment of two of its CEOs in 2005 and 2010, and the sale of The Rockefeller Group’s majority interest in Cushman & Wakefield in 2007.

Doherty was also responsible for promoting news and feature articles on Cushman & Wakefield’s executives, initiatives and research, and co-created the firm’s “Moving with Confidence” marketing campaign, highlighting its most prominent clients and assignments in major cities. He became a Cushman & Wakefield shareholder in 2006, prior to the firm’s acquisition by IFIL.

CBL & Associates Appoints Jeff Curry as Chief Legal Officer

Jeff Curry, a longtime CBL & Associates legal advisor and interim chief legal officer, has been appointed to the post.

Curry will oversee all of the company’s legal services, including real estate, corporate, securities and tax. He began his tenure at the Chattanooga, Tenn.-based CBL as an external legal advisor in 1986 and was named interim chief in February 2012.

He is a member of NAREIT and the Chattanooga, Tennessee and American Bar Associations, and serves as a vice president and a member of the board of directors for Chattanooga Inner City Outreach, Inc., a local nonprofit organization.

Attorney Hired at Eastern Consolidated

Eastern Consolidated has added another attorney, Ari J. Schwartz, Esq., to the investment services firm.

Prior to Eastern, Schwartz practiced law with Teitelbaum & Baskin LLP, where he specialized in bankruptcy, financial restructuring, debtors’ and creditors’ rights, as well as real estate and commercial litigation. He is admitted to the New York and New Jersey Bar Associations.

Schwartz has regularly advised both institutional lenders and individual creditors in connection with Chapter 7, 11 and 13 bankruptcy, including the enforcement of promissory notes, personal guarantees and mortgage obligations, as well as the recovery and defense of preferential and fraudulent transfers.

Justin H. Green Wins Larry A. Silverstein REX Award

Justin H. Green was presented with the Larry A. Silverstein REX Award on April 4 by the United Jewish Appeal (UJA) Federation of New York at its Real Estate and Allied Trades Division’s Real Estate Executives (REX) annual gala.

Green, who is CEO and managing partner of Hays Ventures LLC, was honored for his very active role in supporting the UJA Federation, its beneficiary agencies, and other philanthropic organizations. He was also praised for following in the footsteps of his late grandfather, Meyer “Mike” Steinberg, a philanthropist and real estate developer who was also dedicated to the UJA-Federation.

The award is presented annually to young real estate professionals who are dedicated to the real estate community and to improving the lives of others in New York, in Israel, and around the world. The recipient of this award is seen by his peers as a leader in the community who exemplifies Silverstein's inspiring standards of communal leadership, carrying the torch of philanthropy for the next generation.

This year the REX division raised nearly $500,000 for UJA Federation’s annual campaign to sustain a network of more than 100 health, human service, educational, and community-building agencies that impact more than 4 million people annually.

Eklund-Gomes Group Adds Five New Brokers

Five new brokers have joined Eklund-Gomes Group at Prudential Douglas Elliman in New York.

The new brokers are Hunie Kwon and Genifer Lancaster, currently with Elliman, Jane Calvin and Brian Kelley, formerly of Corcoran, and Rosaria (Sara) DiMaggio, formerly of Cantor-Pecarella Inc.

In addition, there are four new seats available at the firm’s TriBeCa office.

“New developments are back this year, and we are preparing to launch three projects, which will require a talented and dedicated team,” Managing Director Frederik Eklund said in a statement. He is also a main cast member of Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing New York.”

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