Jones Lang Buys Means Knaus Partners

Zacks

As part of its efforts to enhance its office property management capacities, Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. (JLL) acquired a Houston-based property management company - Means Knaus Partners (:MKP). The financial terms were not disclosed.

Adding approximately 16 million square feet to Jones Lang’s portfolio under management, this acquisition will enhance the company’s market share in Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Orlando and Tampa.  

Deal Benefits

Jones Lang can leverage on MKP’s operating platform, which manages 80 prime metropolitan office assets throughout the U.S. The acquisition also brings on board MKP’s strong expertise. These include the joining of Doug Knaus, MKP CEO, as an International Director in Jones Lang LaSalle, and Robert Nowak, MKP COO, as a Managing Director together with an approximate of 100 MKP staff members.

The acquired company that was set up by industry veterans, Steve Means and Doug Knaus in 1998, will help Jones Lang reach the numero uno position in Orlando and secure the second spot for third-party management in Los Angeles County on a combined basis. Jones Lang already enjoys the leading position in Chicago's CBD and Denver, and the second spot in Chicago suburbs.

Recent Expansion

Early in August, Jones Lang also disclosed that its is expanding in the Kansas City-area through the acquisition of commercial real estate firm – Capital Realty – that managed approximately 90 properties (5.4 million square feet) across the Kansas City area for regional and local institutional owners.

Serving as a center for transportation, freight and rail industries and playing a key role in the national supply chain, Kansas City is a prime industrial market that Jones Lang plans to capitalize on.

Our Take

We expect the strategic purchases to bring in market consolidation benefits for Jones Lang. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), following lower-than-expected second-quarter results on higher expenses and leasing revenue declines in China, India and Australia.

A number of companies that are performing better and are worth a look in the same industry include FirstService Corp. (FSRV), that carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) as well as CBRE Group, Inc. (CBG) and HFF Inc. (HF), both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
 

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