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DALLAS-Insignia/ESG in Dallas has hired five brokers who parted ways with Equis Corp.’s Dallas office, making one veteran a point-man in the operation. Drew Kaplan joins Randy Cooper, who exited Equis just prior to the quintet, as a senior managing director.

The five, hedging up on 45 years’ experience, interviewed with several other leading brokerage houses in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex, Insignia/ESG’s Dallas Phil Baker executive director, tells GlobeSt.com. “It seemed to be a perfect fit,” he says of the bulk hire.

Baker confides he’s not done raiding the DFW ranks. He’s not saying who, but he is saying when–”in the immediate future”–he will select a director of office leasing and director of property management from those who have come knocking on his door in the past month when he stepped into the office’s lead role and set off a firestorm for change.

In addition to Kaplan, the team consists of Steve Wentz, now one of four managing directors; Jeffrey C. Laures, one of four directors; and Jeffrey D. Eiting and Robby Skinner, associates. The hires take Insignia/ESG’s Dallas team to 30 tenant reps and brings the capability for a major push in that arena for all product types.

“If you could have a clean slate and a large national platform,” Baker says, “you would expand your business in any way you could.” And that’s just what Insignia/ESG has in store for the DFW region.

Agency brokerage and leasing management are sure to grow, but the new focus is on tenant representation. Baker is plotting an image makeover for Insignia/ESG in Dallas, pushing industrial and retail every bit as hard as office. Internally, Baker’s also pushing to align a team that’s been built from existing Insignia brokers, his bought-out Baker Commercial Realty Inc. and now Equis. It’s time to move forward as Insignia/ESG and lay past affiliations to rest, he says.

“The meteoric growth of Insignia/ESG’s Dallas office underlines our deep commitment to the fourth-largest office market in America,” Mitchell Rudin, president of US transaction services, says in a prepared statement.

Kaplan, Wentz and Laures are the senior veterans in the quintet, working at some of the region’s top firms as they built their careers. Eiting and Skinner, though not as seasoned as their counterparts, grabbed experience in tenant representation while at Equis.

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