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JLL to Boost Retail Brokerage Business on Wilson Retail Buy

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Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. (JLL - Free Report) , which has shortened its name to “JLL,” recently acquired the retail brokerage firm Wilson Retail Group in Southern California for an undisclosed sum. The move is expected to boost the company’s brokerage and investment sales service offerings for retailers and investors.

Founded in 1990 and based in California, Wilson Retail Group presently represents 9 million square feet of retail space in 75 shopping centers; while its investment sales team has $125 million of retail assets in the market.

JLL's Retail Group, which boasts over 100 retail brokerage experts in more than 25 major markets and represents about 550 retail clients, is expected to benefit considerably from this acquisition.

This is because, despite minor hiccups, the economy is on a recovery mode with growing consumer confidence and improving market for retailers. Amid this, the Wilson acquisition is expected to render JLL more capable of meeting the increased demand for expanded brokerage and capital markets services in the region.

JLL would also benefit from the joining of 16 personnel from Wilson Retail Group. Principal Chris Wilson, who founded Wilson Retail Group in partnership with President Scott Burns, will now serve as Executive Vice President, Southwest Brokerage Lead, JLL Retail; while Scott Burns will join as Executive Vice President, Retail Brokerage Lead for JLL's Los Angeles office.

Moreover, Geoff Tranchina will serve as Executive Vice President, Investment Sales. This executive crew, reporting to Belisle, will team up with Naveen Jaggi, President of JLL's Americas Retail Brokerage business.

JLL has been riding high on the growth trajectory for quite some time. Last month, aided by robust growth in fee revenues, the company reported encouraging first-quarter 2015 adjusted earnings of 94 cents per share, comfortably beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 49 cents per share.

JLL currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Investors interested in the real estate operations industry may also consider stocks like CBRE Group, Inc. , Kennedy-Wilson Holdings, Inc. (KW - Free Report) and NorthStar Realty Finance Corp. . While CBRE sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Kennedy-Wilson and NorthStar Realty hold the same Zacks Rank as JLL.

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