JLL Acquires Surge Retail International

by Nate Hunter

Framingham, Mass. — The acquisition will allow JLL to respond to the increase in client demand for tenant representation expertise.

Framingham, Mass. — As part of an ongoing effort to expand its retail platform, Jones Lang LaSalle has acquired Surge Retail International, a specialty retail tenant representation firm based in suburban Boston. The acquisition will enable the firm to respond to the increase in client demand for tenant representation expertise in the retail sector, according to JLL. The price was undisclosed.

Steve Ferris and Michael Hirschfeld, Surge Retail’s co-founders, will join the firm as senior vice presidents and co-lead JLL’s national retail tenant services practice. They will work closely with Lew Kornberg to expand the firm’s retail tenant representation capabilities, targeting premium and high-end retailers occupying space in enclosed malls, outlet centers and dense, urban retail markets across the United States, as well as international retailers wanting to expand throughout North America.

“The addition of Surge Retail strategically advances our quest to provide unparalleled service to a full spectrum of national retailers by utilizing JLL’s local market knowledge and expertise to execute the ever more demanding real estate mandates of those clients,” says Greg Maloney, CEO and president of Jones Lang LaSalle Retail. “Michael and Steve are seasoned veterans who know the nuances specific to main street retail, enclosed mall and outlet center spaces.”

Hirschfeld, who has more than 35 years of experience in retail, co-founded Surge Retail. He has represented retailers such as All Saints, Barney’s Ben Sherman, Bose, Brioni, Brookstone, Diesel, Filson, Lindt Chocolate, Mont Blanc, Puma and Quiksilver, on main street locations including NYC’s Fifth Avenue, Chicago’s Michigan Avenue and Los Angeles’ Rodeo Drive. He graduated from New York University, and has been an instructor at the school’s Real Estate Institute.

“Over the past few years, Steve and I were approached with a number of extremely appealing merger inquiries, but JLL and JLL Retail, in particular, stood out. They just get it.” says Hirschfeld. “Their worldwide presence, coupled with a group of talented retail specialists, made the decision to join JLL obvious. We look forward to being part of a growing business that is building a retail platform locally, strengthening it nationally and integrating it internationally to benefit our clients.”

Ferris, co-founder of Surge Retail, focuses on advocating for high-end retailers in the enclosed mall and outlet sector nationwide. His current clients include ALDO Shoe, Bare Minerals, Bose, Crabtree & Evelyn, Fossil, Groupe Dynamite, Lindt Chocolate and Swarovski. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst with a semester abroad at London School of Economics.

“Our approach has always been to maximize our clients’ portfolios,” says Ferris. “While opening new stores is the most exciting part of the business, we view every store as unique unto itself, advising on the best strategy and adding value to all of our clients’ real estate decisions from expansion and contraction to design and location.”

During the first half of 2013, JLL Retail has added more than 60 new assignments and more than 30 retail clients across the United States.  

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