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DTZ considering bid for Cushman & Wakefield

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While rumors that the parent entities of DTZ Investment Holdings are considering a $2 billion bid for Cushman & Wakefield continue to circulate, no one from the San Diego offices of either firm will comment.

Reports of the acquisition come less than four months after Cassidy Turley and DTZ were merged by a private equity investment consortium backed by TPG Capital, PAG Asia Capital and the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan.

Dan Broderick, DTZ's regional managing principal in San Diego, wouldn't comment on the reports about the parents of DTZ acquiring Cushman & Wakefield, but said more mergers and acquisitions may be expected during the next 12 months.

"I do expect a lot of consolidation in the industry. It makes a lot of sense. It made sense for Cassidy Turley to merge with DTZ when it needed a global platform, and it made sense for BRE to merge with Cassidy Turley before that," Broderick said. "There are things you can't do on just a regional or even a national scale."

Broderick, who said his San Diego offices have a total of about 73 brokers today compared to about 105 earlier in the decade, said he is mindful of what can happen when commercial brokerages get too large and lose touch with their roots.

"Our job is to make sure we are lean and mean. We don't want to have a situation that we get so big that our clients feel we have to have things our way," Broderick said. "What we do have to do is think outside the box and find those opportunities that others don't."

Broderick added that "the economy is now firing on all cylinders," though he is aware that if things become superheated once more there could be a problem.

"There is the potential for that monster below the waterline," Broderick said.

Broderick didn't have exact figures, but said his local offices handled more than $2 billion in sales and leasing volume in 2014.

Calls to Stephen Rosetta, vice chairman of San Diego County Brokerage Services for Cushman & Wakefield, were not returned. Cushman & Wakefield's local offices also posted about $2 billion in sales and leasing volume in 2014.

DTZ and Cassidy Turley aren't the only brokerages that have been merged together or gobbled up by another company. Within the past few weeks, Cushman & Wakefield announced it had acquired Chicago's J.F. McKinney + Associates for an undisclosed price. McKinney represents more than 16 million square feet of commercial space in metropolitan Chicago alone, including the famed John Hancock Center and the Merchandise Mart, among other properties.

Cushman & Wakefield also recently acquired Massey Knakal Realty Services, which Cushman & Wakefield billed as the State of New York's top investment sales firm. Cushman & Wakefield reported Massey Knakal had closed more than 6,000 transactions with a market value in excess of $23 billion.

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