Former Cushman & Wakefield broker Ericka Witkowski left the firm to start her own commercial brokerage, Witko Group.
Witkowski was previously a director of office leasing at Cushman in Miami, representing property owners including Market Street Real Estate Partners, East End Capital, Related Group and Banyan Street Capital. Witkowski joined Cushman in 2017, and was involved in sales and leases totaling $186.5 million encompassing more than 435,000 square feet of office space, according to a release.
At Cushman, she worked with Gordon Messinger, a managing director in the firm’s Miami office.
Witkowski said the pandemic has highlighted inefficiencies in commercial real estate, and she saw an opportunity to start her own firm.
“I saw there was this big gap in the way things were being done in commercial real estate,” she said. “We have the systems in place, but they hadn’t been heavily used [before],” she added, referring to technological tools such as virtual tours and real-time data.
Based in South Miami, Witko Group will represent landlords and tenants, and will consult with developers on new projects for a post-Covid world, said Witkowski, who plans to hire brokers in the next year.
Over 900,000 square feet of office space is expected to come online in South Florida in the second half of this year, with only 22 percent of that space preleased, according to a recent report from JLL. Witkowski said suburban office markets are showing more resilience than those in the urban core.
At Cushman, she was part of the team that brokered the largest office lease in 2019, Lennar Corp.’s 16-year lease for its new headquarters at 5505 Waterford at Blue Lagoon.
Before joining Cushman, Witkowski worked at Avison Young and Colliers International South Florida.