by Dan Rafter
For Douglas Bolton, the merger between DTZ and Cassidy Turley in early January was the best possible way to start a new year.
The merger mostly eliminated the Cassidy Turley name, leaving behind a much larger DTZ, one that boasts $2.9 billion in annual revenues and more than 28,000 employees. The new DTZ — now owned by a private equity investment consortium backed by TPG Capital, PAG Asia Capital and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan — also manages 3.3 billion square feet of property across the globe.
Bolton, who was managing principal of Cassidy Turley’s Cincinnati and Dayton regions and retains the same position now that the company is DTZ, says that he had long hoped that Cassidy Turley would expand its reach with such a high-profile merger.
“When I first joined Cassidy Turley almost four years ago, I was hoping that something like this would happen,” Bolton told Midwest Real Estate News. “That was the discussion around my recruitement to come here, that Cassidy Turley would grow into an international player in the commercial real estate services business. The promises made to me almost four years ago have certainly come true.”
Bolton is far from the ony Midwest CRE pro impacted by the merger. Cassidy Turley had a strong presence in the Midwest, operating in markets from Chicago to Columbus to Minneapolis.
Bolton says that the brokers now working DTZ have gained an important benefit from the merger: DTZ has an international reach. The brokers working with DTZ, then, are now in better position to do business not only locally and nationally, but internationally, too.
“In this industry, you definitely need to get bigger to be better,” Bolton said. “The ability to do business across the globe is a prerequisite. The DTZ organization comes to this party with a great list of clients, too. Besides our brokers now having the ability to push our clients into international markets in a way we couldn’t before, we now have the ability to represent some great U.S. clients we didn’t have access to before.”
Jeff Henry, former managing principal with Cassidy Turley’s Indianapolis office who now holds the same position with DTZ, said that he, too, is excited about the merger.
Like Bolton, he pointed to DTZ’s international presence as a major positive.
“Our ability to do more multi-market and international business because of the reach of DTZ is exciting,” he said. “We were strong locally and nationally as Cassidy Turley. But there was a certain amount of business with existing clients and prospects that we couldn’t get because we didn’t have an international presence. This will help us alleviate those roadblocks.”
Tod Lickerman will serve as the global chief executive officer of the integrated company. Joseph Stettinius Jr., Cassidy Turley’s chief executive officer, is now chief executive of the Americas, while Brett White, former chief executive officer of CBRE Group, who also invested in the acquisition, will become full-time executive chairman beginning in March of 2015.
“This combination is an excellent cultural fit and mutually beneficial for both companies, given our strong position in the U.S. market and DTZ’s global footprint,” said Stettinius in written statement. “As DTZ and Cassidy Turley join forces under our new brand and ownership, I’m excited about the advantages we can now offer our clients and our people.”
In a blog post about the move, Stettinius says that DTZ is now a top-three global commercial real estate services firm. He points to the combination of the smaller and “more tenacious” Cassidy Turley with the global power of DTZ as a reason why the acquisition of Cassidy Turley made so much sense.
“DTZ’s established full-service resources throughout Europe and Asia, paired with Cassidy Turley’s legacy of strong market leadership in the U.S. will immediately create new advantages for our clients,” Stettinius said in his post.
Lickerman, too, said that the acquisition will result in a stronger DTZ.
“The combination of our two companies under new ownership has immediately enhanced our ability to meet our clients’ needs with speed, efficiency and flexibility—service qualities that are unique among global firms our size,” Lickerman said in a written statement.
Henry told Midwest Real Estate News that he is ready to compete for new business now that his brokers have the DTZ name behind them.
“If you want to compete for certain types of business, you need to get bigger,” Henry said. “This merger allows us to get into the door and have a conversation with clients that we were challenged to reach before.”