JLL’s earnings fell by nearly a quarter in 2020, driven by a sharp decline in leasing revenues.
Adjusted EBITDA fell 24 percent last year to $860 million, the global brokerage announced Tuesday.
The drop was led by a decline in fees from leasing activities, which plunged 26 percent to $1.8 billion. Fees from capital markets deals fell 11 percent to $1.3 billion.
JLL CEO Christian Ulbrich said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call Tuesday morning that he expects building sales and debt placement to pick up more quickly this year than leasing activity, especially in places such as Europe where lockdowns are restricting activity.
“We are overall much more optimistic for the capital markets outlook than we are for the leasing outlook,” he said.
JLL paid down its net debt from $861 million at the end of 2019 to $192 million in the fourth quarter of 2020.
The company achieved about $330 million in savings last year through a combination of salary cuts, layoffs and government aid.