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IRVINE, CA-Colliers International has launched an occupier services group and a landlord services group as the company continues to expand its specialty service offerings. Glen Esnard, Irvine-based president of Colliers International Brokerage Services USA, tells GlobeSt.com that the two recently established groups are part of a strategy the firm is pursuing that is designed to focus more tightly on meeting the unique needs of specific sets of clients.

For the occupier services group, Colliers has named Martin Pupil, former EVP and general manager of Colliers International’s Montreal operations, as the new Irvine-based managing director for the Greater Los Angeles region. For the landlord services group, Colliers has hired former Grubb & Ellis SVP Chris DuMont as SVP, managing director and regional manager, based in Los Angeles and Century City.

Colliers already has a private capital group that was established about a year ago, and the firm has other specialty groups in the works that will include a legal services practice as well as a medical services group that will offer integrated property management and medical office leasing. Esnard tells GlobeSt.com that in many cases individual Colliers brokers and teams have developed their own specialized practices, but the company’s goal in establishing the specialties on a corporate level represents “a shift to a more strategic and less random approach.”

Esnard explains that the Colliers strategy identifies clusters of clients that have similar needs in order to build practices around those clusters. “Given the tighter and tighter service requirements that our clients are asking for, if you want to be successful in our business you need to either be a highly focused boutique firm or, if you are a larger enterprise like Colliers, you need to become a portfolio of boutique services with a high degree of specialization,” he says.

On the occupier services side, for example, Esnard points out that the needs of a Fortune 1000 corporation differ from those of a high-growth tech firm. The Colliers strategy is designed to provide the specific services that each type of client requires.

In addition, Esnard points out, the strategy is designed to be knowledge-based and to take full advantage of advances in technology. Although the commercial real estate services industry has been slow to embrace the sharing of knowledge through open platforms, he observes, the industry is starting to utilize technology in a more knowledge-based and open platform, which is one of the elements of the new Colliers specialty groups.

Among the reasons that Colliers is forming these groups now is that clients are asking for the services. Another is that Colliers sees an opportunity to add significant value for its clients through these knowledge-based systems.

“We know, for example, that tenants who are expanding into Los Angeles have a high probability of expanding into San Francisco and the Puget Sound,” Esnard explains. “We want to be able to track that migration on behalf of our landlord clients and be ahead of the curve in advising them about where the tenant requirements will be in the future as opposed to just advising them on the current requirement in today’s market.

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