Another big deal: Cushman & Wakefield to buy Chicago office specialist J.F. McKinney + Associates

Jack McKinney

Jack McKinney

by Dan Rafter

Major changes to the Midwest commercial real estate industry keep coming. This time, it’s the news that Cushman & Wakefield has agreed to purchase J.F. McKinney + Associates in Chicago. Terms of this latest big deal were not released.

This announcement comes almost immediately after news broke that DTZ is considering purchasing Cushman & Wakefield for $2 billion. Also this month, Prologis and Norway’s Norges Bank Investment Management announced that it will buy KTR Capital Partners for $5.9 billion. That’s a big buy for Prologis: KTR owns nearly 70 million square feet of industrial real estate in 25 markets.

The Cushman & Wakefield purchase of J.F. McKinney + Associates is important to the Midwest, too. J.F. McKinney is a busy player in Chicago’s office leasing market. The firm represents more than 16 million square feet of Chicago-area office.

Many of the buildings that J.F. McKinney represents are well-known in the Chicago area: the Merchandise Mart, John Hancock Center, 300 North LaSalle, 70 West Madison and 440 South LaSalle.

Jack McKinney, president and founder of the company, said that the offer from Cushman & Wakefield was just too good to pass up.

“Now we are capable of creating more value for our clients,” McKinney said in a written statement. “It’s an unmatched opportunity for our agents and our clients.”

McKinney explained further on a letter posted to the J.F. McKinney Web site:

“After lengthy consideration and heartfelt self-reflection, we have decided our clients would benefit from a more robust platform of commercial real estate services and better access to first-class research capabilities and worldwide industry intelligence,” McKinney wrote.

Shawn Mobley, president of Cushman & Wakefield’s Central and Southeast regions and Chicago market leader, said that the acquisition gives his company the chance to expand its foothold in the Chicago office market.

“We have been working hard to successfully broaden and deepen our services in Chicago,” Mobley said in a statement. “Building a market-leading agency leasing platform was always one of our top priorities.”

During the last 25 years, J.F. McKinney has closed nearly 25 million square feet of leases. The company has secured such notable anchor tenants during this time as Goldman Sachs, IBM, Mayer Brown, Hyatt Corporation and Abbot Laboratories.

Jack McKinney wil join Cushman & Wakefield as vice chairman, and will be responsible for leading the Chicago agency leasing practice.

The acquisition is expected to close before April 30.

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