Canadian firm acquires GPE companies
Canadian-based real estate services firm, Avison Young, acquired Phoenix-based GPE Management Services, and the newly merged firm is opening up offices here in Phoenix.Avison Young’s new Phoenix office is located in downtown Phoenix at 2777 E. Camelback Rd., Suite 230.The new offices will be Avison Young’s first location in Arizona, and 52nd office in the U.S., and is another step in the firm’s ongoing expansion efforts.Over the past seven years, Avison Young has grown from 11 to, now, 77 offices in 70 markets and from 300 to more than 2,200 real estate professionals in Canada, the U.S., Mexico and Europe.GPE Companies was a privately held, third-party real estate firm that has been serving a range of clients, from private individual investors to publicly traded corporations to international investment groups, for the past 43 years in Arizona.GPE offered services for all property types, including office, retail, flex/industrial and land. In addition, the firm had a division specializing in all areas of healthcare real estate. Over the past four decades, the company facilitated acquisitions and sales transactions exceeding $2.5 billion in real estate value. GPE also represents 6 million square feet of commercial space under management in the Phoenix metro area.Monday’s acquisition brings Avison Young’s total square feet of retail, industrial and office properties under management in North America to approximately 100 million square feet. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.Effective immediately, GPE is rebranded as Avison Young. The change in ownership adds 29 employees to Avison Young’s operations, including David Genovese, Julie Johnson and Alexandra Loye who become Principals of Avison Young. Genovese also becomes Managing Director of the company’s Phoenix office. He will focus on overseeing the growth and development of Avison Young’s presence in the Phoenix region, servicing new and existing clients, and managing the day-to-day operations of the office. Genovese brings to Avison Young 30 years of commercial real estate experience – all with GPE, where he was most recently President, designated broker and principal.“We are pleased to be opening our first office in Phoenix,” said Chair and CEO Mark E. Rose. “The acquisition of GPE provides Avison Young with a strong foundation, particularly in terms of brokerage and property management, in Arizona as we begin to roll out our expansion program in the state. With David and the rest of the GPE team on board, we are again adding individuals who are respected for their leadership, extensive industry experience and in-depth local market knowledge. More importantly, we also know that they will fit seamlessly into our Principal-led, collaborative culture and provide a superior level of service to clients.”Also joining Avison Young from GPE are: Nicholas Pelusio, Bret Isbell, Kevin Helland, Kristie Jones, Brooke Askew-Rossi, LeiAnne Oborne, Dominic Perry, Gail Brown, Jennifer Pliska, Laurie Sandau, Linda Robbins, Tracey Galligan, Tom Kimsey,Marion Chaney, Gregory Leverton, Becky Bishop, Esther Grabowsky, Gina Gringle, Jonathan Collins, Jason Gutierrez,Angela Williams, Jen Day, Amanda Knight, Rogelio Martinez, Jamie Svobodo and Ronald Genovese (company founder).“We think very highly of the GPE organization and the presence that it has established in Phoenix, which is a rapidly growing market that is gaining in importance to many of our occupier and investor clients,” said Earl Webb, Avison Young president, U.S. operations. “GPE has built a high-quality service platform, with dynamic leadership, and Avison Young looks forward to growing our company’s presence in this important U.S. market – through the acquisition of this firm as well as future additions to staff in all areas of our business. David Genovese is someone who has consistently provided excellent client service during his career while building a broad-based service platform at GPE. Additionally, the company has a number of senior managers and brokers who will fit the Avison Young culture perfectly and continue to enhance our client-service capabilities in the Phoenix market and beyond.”GPE was ranked the number one brokerage firm (24 brokers or fewer and medical categories) in AZ Big Media’s 2016 “Ranking Arizona: The Best of Arizona Business” list, and among the top five in the industrial, property management and best workplace culture categories, and among the top 10 in the retail and land categories.“With Phoenix, Avison Young now has a local presence in all major American markets,” adds Hiren Thakar, Avison Young Principal and Senior Vice-President of Corporate Strategy. “With this acquisition, we have quickly established a presence in one of the largest and fastest-growing metro markets in the U.S. Furthermore, GPE is a well-established player in the highly dynamic medical office market, which is becoming increasingly important to our clients across the country. David and his team will now be able to take advantage of Avison Young’s extensive resources to better serve the thriving medical office property sector inPhoenix. At the same time, his team will be able to collaborate with other Avison Young offices and provide multi-market medical office solutions for clients.” Today’s announcement comes on the heels of Avison Young acquiring North Rae Sanders and opening a new office in Coventry, U.K. on January 11, 2016; acquiring Toronto-based property appraisal company Metrix Realty Group (Ontario) Inc. on January 4, 2016; and opening new offices in Memphis, Tennessee on December 7, 2015 and in Mexico City on December 2, 2015.