Staubach, JLL Watch Continues

Though as of this afternoon Jones Lang LaSalle had not yet announced a deal to acquire Staubach Co., the transaction is reported to be imminent. Calls to both JLL and Staubach were not returned at press time. As reported by CPN last week, U.K.-based Property Week reported JLL would acquire Staubach Co. in a $735 million deal, a figure that would reflect 10 times Staubach’s earning before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization. The acquisition, if it occurs, should create opportunities for other firms. The loss of a pure tenant rep firm like Staubach will likely provide growth opportunities for Cresa Partners, whose five-year plan calls for the firm to double in size, said company CEO Bill Goade. The acquisition could also create recruiting opportunities for Cresa, Goade said. “There are brokers who like working in that tenant-rep-only business model,” he said. But Goade said it is not a win-win for all. “Corporate users will have one less qualified firm to deal with,” he said. Though Cresa is not for sale, Goade believes that if the Jones Lang LaSalle-Staubach deal happens, there may be a domino effect. “There could be two or three other acquisitions in the next few months, but they won’t involve us,” he said Two sources with close ties to the Dallas commercial real estate industry, where Staubach is headquartered, said the company’s executives are extremely close-mouthed about any possible sale. But one of the sources characterized the company’s founder, Roger Staubach (pictured), as essentially “out of the business,” and increasingly focused on philanthropic activities. Some of Staubach’s family members work for the firm, the source said, speculating that they may move into owning commercial real estate after the firm is sold, following the example of other well-known Dallas families, such as the Perots, who own Hillwood, the developer with signature projects such as Victory in Dallas and AllianceTexas. Another prominent Dallas family, the oil-rich Hunts, have been prominent real estate owners and developers. And the family may have more capital to increase their commercial real estate holdings. Earlier this month, XTO Energy Inc. agreed to acquire Hunt Petroleum Corp. for $4.2 billion, the company founded by H.L. Hunt.