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Net lease is the backbone of the commercial real estate industry. An unassuming asset class—or perhaps better put, real estate strategy—net lease investment volume increased by 10.9% to a record $77.5 billion last year, according to CBRE. But don’t let the bread-and-butter nature of these deals fool you. They can require as much work and planning as larger deals in other asset classes. The people and teams and companies that work this space are, by necessity, rigorous and meticulous in their transactions. In the following pages, we bring to you our selection of the best deal-makers in the space. They may not be the largest or most well-known; instead we selected them for the significant contributions they have made to the industry.

ERIC ALLON Bernkopf Goodman LLP Unsatisfied with the industry’s lack of proptech implementation concerning building design and construction, Eric Allon grew determined to establish advances and declare change by understanding its full impact. Learning from the leading real estate technology service providers, Allon quickly became an expert on the subject relating to lease negotiations, tenants’ desires, costs absorbed by owners and more. As a real estate law partner and attorney at Bernkopf Goodman LLP, Allon soon established a reputation as the “Proptech Guy” within the Boston commercial real estate space. With wide-spread experience in representing both landlords and tenants in lease negotiations, and extensive knowledge related to industry disruptors, acquisitions, management, financing transactions and commercial loan workouts, Allon executed a notable transaction in representing the footwear company, Clark’s Americas Inc. in its new headquarter lease at a four story, 120,000-square-foot office property; a transaction which the Boston Business Journal referred to as the “Real Estate Deal of the Year.” A true leader in the space, Allon has penned a series of industry technology-related op-ed articles for the Boston Business Journal. He frequently speaks on panels, moderates industry events and leads his own proptech seminars. Influencing even greater masses, his LinkedIn posts receive substantial attention and often perform as trending stories. Additionally, Allon is a regular guest speaker and mentor at the Harvard Business School of Entrepreneurship.

RISING STAR ARON CLINE Matthews Real Estate Investment Services

Aron Cline has successfully established himself as a premier broker in the single-tenant net-leased industry. Continually setting the bar as a leader in the space, Cline has managed Matthews Real Estate Investment Services’ Orange County office for the past three years. As SVP and senior director of single-tenant net-leased business, he has proven essential to the firm’s overall growth and success, in terms of both revenue and size. He prides himself on an in-depth knowledge of the market and is committed to providing clients with expertise regarding net-lease projects, from development to disposition. Providing research, advisory, financing and transaction services, he incessantly tracks the market and utilizes his photographic memory to create an internal database of the nation’s sales comps. Specializing in the acquisition and disposition of retail investment properties, he employs an exclusive listing marketing approach to generate exposure and create competition among buyers. He has remained a top producing agent at Matthews since its inception in 2015, and he successfully closed the firm’s largest transactions of 2015 and 2016. In addition to forging ties with some of the nation’s largest institutions, developers, syndicators, lenders and private-equity companies, he serves as a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers. Beginning his career in 2011 as an investment sales broker at Marcus & Millichap, Cline then worked as an associate vice president at Colliers International, prior to joining Matthews.

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Erika Morphy

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