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Cushman & Wakefield to Buy 40% Stake in Greystone Multifamily Business for $500 Million – The Wall Street Journal

Rental apartments have been one of the hottest sectors in commercial real estate in recent years.

Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Commercial real estate services giant Cushman & Wakefield PLC has agreed to pay $500 million for a 40% stake in the rental apartment lending and loan servicing business owned by Greystone & Co., the companies said, in the latest sign of the strength of the rental apartment industry.

Cushman, a firm founded more than a century ago that has about 400 offices in 60 countries, has been a major player in the rental apartment brokerage business, representing sellers in more than $11 billion of deals last year. The deal with Greystone marks an expansion by Cushman into the business of making loans to buyers and owners and servicing those loans.

Portraits of Bernard Wakefield and J. Clydesdale Cushman, founders of Cushman & Wakefield, seen at the firm’s headquarters in Manhattan in 2015.

Photo: Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal

Cushman believes that it can build its multifamily business by being able to offer a full plate of services. Last year, Cushman acquired Pinnacle Property Management Services LLC, one of the largest multifamily property management firms.

Greystone, which will continue to operate the lending and servicing business, has been one of the country’s largest originators of loans to owners and buyers of rental apartments that are resold to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration. Last year, Greystone originated $16.6 billion in loans.

Rental apartments have been one of the hottest sectors in commercial real estate in recent years, thanks partly to the high price of for-sale housing, which has closed many out of that market. Rents have continued to rise in many parts of the U.S. despite eviction bans during the pandemic.

Cushman’s purchase of the 40% stake of the Greystone business is expected to close this year, the companies said.

Write to Peter Grant at [email protected]

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