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DALLAS-In a four-month heated race to the finish, Jones Lang LaSalle has won the nod from Affiliated Computers Services Inc. for tenant rep and lease administration planning of its 9.5 million sf in 100 countries. The lion’s share is leased space and mostly in the US.

Bruce Rutherford, managing director in Texas for Jones Lang LaSalle, tells GlobeSt.com that the Dallas-based team’s charge in the coming year is to map out master plans for all large concentrations of ACS-controlled space. The ACS portfolio has 900,000 sf of owned space, mostly in North Texas, including its headquarters at 2828 N. Haskell Ave. in Dallas. He says the targeted markets are the headquarters city, Atlanta, New Jersey, Kentucky and Utah.

JLL has assigned seven professionals to the transaction management component and three to lease administration for the ACS account. The assignment includes masterminding innovative clauses and lease language for the Fortune 500 company’s master document.

“ACS works very hard to match the real estate portfolio with the timing of contracts with clients,” Rutherford says. “There is a host of innovations that ACS wants to make a reality. It’s a very innovative and aggressive document.” Once that’s etched in stone, more JLL brokers in other markets will be trained in the ACS-branded document. He says the objective is to “minimize the real estate risk.”

ACS has laid out several key performance-based indicators for its new real estate overseer. The benchmarks include transaction speed and cost reductions in real estate, now a portfolio of mostly class B office space. “They’re in the business of providing services to corporations and government clients so cost is very important,” Rutherford stresses.

At this point in the plan, ACS isn’t planning to shed any employees, but it is expecting 70% of its growth for five to 10 years will be overseas, where it now leases about one million sf, according to Rutherford. As for shedding space, that will come to light after the master plans are done. “Within a year, we’ll start to make decisions based on the master plans,” he says, adding less than 1% has been put out for sublease. “ACS has run a very, very tight ship for a very long time.”

As would be expected, all brokerage heavyweights were in the running for the assignment. Local sources say ACS previously had Cushman & Wakefield Inc. and Staubach Co. working the beat. “We had very much enjoyed and benefited from our relationship with our previous partners,” says David Jarrett, ACS’ senior vice president of workplace resources, “but given ACS’ expanding and diverse real estate portfolio we felt that it was time to make a change.”

“It’s not the largest assignment we’ve gotten this year, but it’s a very important assignment,” Rutherford says. “It represents a significant change for Jones Lang LaSalle in the state of Texas.” The sweet spot to the win is “it’s right in the backyard of some of our toughest competitors.”

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