CBRE Acquires Stake in Bethesda-Based Streetsense

International real estate company is buying retail brokerage segment


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Streetsense exterior near the Bethesda Metro station

via Streetsense on Facebook/ Joe Goss

The commercial real estate company CBRE announced Wednesday it has purchased a 50 percent interest in Streetsense, the Bethesda-based real estate, design and marketing company.

Los Angeles-based CBRE acquired Streetsense’s retail brokerage as part of the deal and will bring on the company’s 17 brokers and they’ll work as part of a new business called Streetsense|CBRE.

“Streetsense’s focus on ‘creating brands people love and places people love to be’ will be amplified by CBRE’s powerful service offering, client base and commitment to innovation,” Anthony Buono, CBRE’s executive managing director of retail and and transaction services in the Americas, said in a statement.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

CBRE said on its website that Streetsense “understands the power of consumer experience within the built environment.”

Brian Taff, Streetsense’s president, said in a statement that the partnership will enable the company to better support brands and “drive demand for clients.”

“Our nearly 200 creative professionals will greatly benefit from CBRE’s broad range of advisory and transaction capabilities, as well as their international industry relationships,” Taff said.

CBRE is a public company that employs more than 75,000 people around the world and had $13.1 billion in revenue in 2016, according to its website.

Streetsense has had a hand in designing prominent retail locations in the Washington, D.C., area for years. Recently, it has been involved with The Wharf, the major new mixed-use development along the D.C. waterfront; expansion efforts for Cava Mezze Grill; and Isabella Eatery at Tysons Galleria, the massive food court project being developed by chef Mike Isabella.

The company’s bright yellow signs can often be seen in the windows of vacant storefronts around Bethesda when it’s working with local property owners to lease and market retail spaces.

Streetsense led the community outreach efforts to rename and rebrand the developing area around the White Flint Metro station as the Pike District.

A deal between CBRE and Streetsense has been in the works since the summer, when Washington Business Journal first reported CBRE had plans to acquire the Bethesda business.

This week, Buono told the Business Journal that the investment made sense because CBRE doesn’t have the design, branding and creative pieces that Streetsense does. He noted that in today’s world, many of the 1,300 retailers CBRE represents are looking “for a reinvention around consumer experience.”

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