Real estate firm Colliers has taken a hit from the pandemic, but in its fourth quarter earnings call, executives said the blow wasn’t as bad as anticipated.
The real estate firm saw revenue drop just 2 percent in the fourth quarter, falling from $928.3 million to $913.7 million. For the year, Colliers saw revenue drop seven percent, from $3 billion to $2.7 billion.
The drop in revenue last quarter may be attributed to a lack of leasing, which decreased 26 percent over the same period in 2019, from $292 million to $215 million.
But other streams of revenue made up for the loss. Outsourcing and advisory, for example, increased 14 percent for the quarter. Those services make up about 41 percent of the company’s total revenue, whereas leasing accounts for 24 percent.
The firm also benefited from its geographic diversity. While revenues in international markets were down — by a whopping 19 percent in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and 5 percent in Asia — revenue in the Americas increased 8 percent.
Office brokerages in particular have been hit hard by the pandemic, as companies reenvision what the future of work will look like following the work from home revolution.
COO John Friedrichsen said that Colliers remains “bullish” on the opportunity to help companies find what works best for them, while CEO Jay Hennick took it one step further.
“If anybody in your investment banking area has an opportunity for us to consider, I’ll give you my home phone number, my wife’s phone number and even my kid’s phone number,” he added.
Looking toward the future, Colliers expects to make a comeback, with revenues increasing anywhere from 10 to 25 percent over the course of 2021.
“We do expect a rebound in transaction activity in the back half of the year,” said Christian Mayer, the firm’s CFO. “There is optimism that conditions will improve.”