JLL I-sales broker out amid merger with HFF

Yoav Oelsner stuck around when group of top dealmakers departed for Colliers in late 2016
By Rich Bockmann | April 19, 2019 01:05PM

Yoav Oelsner (Credit: Getty Images)

Yoav Oelsner (Credit: Getty Images)

In the midst of JLL’s takeover of capital-markets specialist HFF, one of the legacy institutional sales brokers from JLL is out.

Yoav Oelsner, who was part of a small team that handled JLL’s big-ticket sales, recently left the company, sources told The Real Deal.

When reached Thursday afternoon, Oelsner confirmed he left the brokerage and said he was looking forward to working on new opportunities, but declined to comment further.

A spokesperson for JLL did not respond to a request for comment.

Oelsner was part of a group of I-sales brokers including Glenn Tolchin and Anthony Ledesma that worked under Mo Beler, the former head of investments at Innovo Property Group who joined JLL in 2017 as head of the Chicago-based brokerage’s New York City investment sales.

The year prior, JLL’s top sales team of Richard Baxter, Yoron Cohen and Scott Latham had departed for Colliers International. And JLL’s remaining brokers were left to carry the flag for the firm, which in 2015 was in the Top 5 of investment-sales brokerages in New York City.

Oelsner, who had been at JLL since 2012, had originally made plans to join his colleagues at Colliers, sources familiar with the talks told TRD. But he ultimately decided to stay at JLL, where he would be able to carve out a bigger niche for himself.

In the midst of a struggling sales market, though, JLL lost market share to competitors in 2017, and made moves to bolster its performance. Last year, the brokerage hired middle-market specialist Bob Knakal, who started building out a team made up of former Massey Knakal Realty Services alumni.

And just last month, JLL announced it would be acquiring HFF for $2 billion, a deal expected to close in the third quarter.

While HFF’s impressive debt-brokerage business (it did $61 billion worth of deals in 2017, compared to JLL’s $24.1, according to the Mortgage Bankers’ Association) looks like it will make JLL a debt powerhouse nationwide, there’s quite a bit of overlap between the two firms’ businesses here in New York.

HHF’s capital markets group, led by co-heads Andrew Scandalios and Michael Gigliotti, outpaced JLL in sales and loans in New York last year by a wide margin.

One source familiar with the merger said that due to HFF’s higher production, the company’s leadership team will stay in place within JLL’s capital markets group, which could squeeze some JLL legacy brokers.