In a release, Frank Liantonio, C&W's EVP for global capitalmarkets, says the challenges stemming from the credit crisis andslowdown in the economy "have increased demand among our clientsfor a comprehensive approach to problem resolution from the capitalmarkets and real estate perspective." Liantonio tells GlobeSt.com,"We've taken a core group of people, both geographically andservice-line wise, to address these questions." The team includesspecialists in asset management, financial analysis, valuation,leasing, property management, project management, investment sales,loan sales, debt and equity finance and litigation support.

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Liantonio tells GlobeSt.com the challenges faced by clients "maybe asset-specific or may concern an entire portfolio." Members ofthe resolution group will work with the clients to develop an assetstrategy, which may include a short-term repositioning, alonger-term hold or immediate financial resolution, such as thesale of loans, the sale of assets or loan restructuring, accordingto a release.

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Going forward into 2009, Liantonio expects the group will becomebusy. "There haven't been many defaults as yet, but we anticipatethat they will rise over the next few quarters," he says. Althoughhe notes that some economists have predicted a gradual improvementin the economy in the second half of '09, thus shortening theduration of the downturn, Liantonio expects the resolution groupwill be operating for the next two to three years.

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C&W had formed a similar group in the CRE slump that beganfollowing the 1987 stock market crash. At that time, he tellsGlobeSt.com, a key issue was a combination of overbuilding and aneconomic downturn. "This time, we're starting from a much morepositive base," he says.

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Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny is managing editor of Real Estate Forum and GlobeSt.com. He has been reporting on business since 1988 and on commercial real estate since 2007. He is based at ALM Real Estate Media Group's offices in New York City.