Cushman & Wakefirld acquires Canadian leader to form Cushman & Wakefield LePage (CAN)

Cushman & Wakefield, Inc. announced that it has acquired its long time Canadian affiliate, Royal LePage Commercial Inc., Canada's leading real estate services firm. The new firm will soon be known in Canada as Cushman & Wakefield LePage, reflecting the branding and heritage of both firms.

This exciting acquisition unites two industry leaders, providing LePage professionals with a powerful global platform of tools and services to help meet the increasingly complex needs of clients.

With revenues that topped the US $1-billion mark in 2004, Cushman & Wakefield is a global real estate services powerhouse, in 189 offices in 57 countries. The firm has had 25 percent market growth compounded over the last two years and is having the most profitable year in its history.

"This is a day of celebration for both firms and our clients," said Bruce Mosler, President and CEO of Cushman & Wakefield. "I would characterize the creation of Cushman & Wakefield LePage as a win-win that will bring our firm to the next level. This strategic merger completes our North American platform, and truly makes Cushman & Wakefield the dominant firm. LePage is a highly profitable real estate services firm with a solid reputation, outstanding customer relationships, a premier group of brokerage professionals. We are thrilled to welcome Canada – one of the world's most prosperous trading nations -- and all of the talented people who have made LePage an industry leader to our global firm."

"This merger is a watershed in the history of our two great firms," said Colum Bastable, President and CEO of Royal LePage Commercial. "We were founded in 1913 and Cushman & Wakefield dates back to 1917. We both played central roles in shaping a dominant position in the real estate industry in our own countries.

"It is no surprise given our synergies and the pressures of globalization that we have made this decision," added Mr. Bastable, who will remain President and CEO of the merged firm.

A private company with more than 520 employees in five cities, LePage has operations in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal and affiliate offices in Edmonton, Winnipeg and Atlantic Canada. The firm has been owned by Brookfield Asset Management (currently Brascan Corporation) since 1984. This transaction excludes the Royal LePage residential network, which Brookfield Asset Management manages under the Royal LePage Franchise Services Fund, and the Brascan Financial Real Estate Group, which is also owned and operated by Brookfield Asset Management.

Mr. Bastable said that he expects the transition to a global firm will be smooth for clients and employees, with no disruption in business. "Our clients will continue to work with the familiar professionals they've come to know and trust, only now they will benefit from the added leverage offered by a world-leading firm. For our managers, professionals and employees, this move opens up tremendous career opportunities."

Mr. Bastable said new services, such as asset services, will come on line in Canada, as LePage aligns itself to Cushman & Wakefield service platform. "This merger has positioned us for the future. With a global infrastructure and network behind us, there are no limits to our ability to serve our clients."

Source: Cushman & Wakefield

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