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CHICAGO-Newmark Knight Frank, headquartered in New York City, has hired Gregory Kirsch as a principal in the firm’s Chicago office. Kirsch will start the firm’s retail presence in Chicago. He had previously been a principal with Baum Realty Group LLC.

Kirsch will be “building the division from scratch,” he says. “Usually, you go into a group that has already been in existence forever.” He plans to hire six retail brokers to “anchor the team” which could increase to “as many as 10 after a year,” Kirsch says. His goal is to attract national tenants and to focus on leasing in the core retail markets in the city such as the Central Business District and River North, he says.

Kirsch worked at Baum for 10 years, representing Starbucks Coffee, FedEx Kinko’s, HealthSouth Physical Therapy and Washington Mutual. He was named retail broker of the year for tenant representation by the Chicago Association of Realtors in 2003. The firm also recently hired Mitchell Loveman as a principal for the firm’s Chicago office. Loveman will focus on growing the firm’s Midwest operation.

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