News Release: Avison Young opens new office in San Diego, California

Leading Canadian commercial real estate firm opens its 22nd location outside Canada and sixth office in Southern California; Jerry Keeney becomes a Principal

Toronto, ON – Mark E. Rose, Chair and CEO of Avison Young, Canada’s largest independently-owned commercial real estate services company, announced today the opening of a newly-formed office in San Diego, California.

The newest American office marks Avison Young’s 22nd market outside of Canada and an additional step in the firm’s ongoing aggressive growth and expansion strategy.

Over the past four years, Avison Young has grown from 11 to, now, 44 offices in 36 markets and from 300 to more than 1,200 real estate professionals across Canada and the U.S. The new San Diego office represents the company’s sixth office in Southern California. 

Effective immediately, Jerry Keeney joins Avison Young as a Principal and will oversee the operations and growth of the San Diego office, as well as service clients. He will also focus on further expanding the company’s landlord agency leasing, tenant representation and investment sales practice in Southern California. Keeney was most recently Managing Director of Cassidy Turley’s San Diego office.

“Avison Young’s expansion into San Diego is of critical importance to Avison Young’s overall Southern California strategic plan,” comments Rose. “Jerry is a highly experienced leasing and investment sales professional with deep knowledge of the institutional markets, which is especially beneficial to our rapidly growing leasing, capital markets and investment sales practice across the U.S. We are very pleased to have Jerry join us to spearhead our growth in San Diego. He has extensive experience in the market and brings with him the knowledge of both client development and strategy execution.”

Avison Young opened its first Southern California office in Los Angeles in August 2011, followed by a second L.A. office in December 2011 through the acquisition of Ramsey-Shilling Commercial Real Estate Services, Inc. In March 2012, industry leader Chris Cooper joined as a Principal and Managing Director of the Southern California region. In September 2012, Avison Young acquired Starrpoint Commercial Partners, Inc. and opened a third L.A. office in Santa Monica. In November 2012, Avison Young opened its fourth L.A. office in Downtown L.A., followed that same month by a new office in Irvine, CA.

“Jerry’s background will be invaluable to our organization and our Southern California expansion as we continue to build our business throughout the region and beyond,” states Earl Webb, Avison Young’s President, U.S. Operations. “Jerry has been very successful throughout his career, and his addition to our already extensive Southern California leadership team will further solidify our strong presence in the market. We are thrilled to have Jerry join our Principal-led organization and the growing team of professionals who have decided over the past couple of years to make Avison Young their home.”  

Effective immediately, Avison Young’s new San Diego office will be located at 4225 Executive Square, Suite 600, La Jolla CA, 92037. The office is situated in the University Towne Center (UTC) submarket of San Diego between downtown San Diego and North County, and minutes away from the Village of La Jolla.

“With his long history of market dominance and leadership throughout San Diego County, Jerry is the optimal brand builder. We look forward to leveraging his longstanding track record to provide best-in-class service delivery to our clients,” says Cooper.

He adds: “With breakthrough technology companies and research organizations, the largest military population in the world, and a strong tourism industry, San Diego County has one of the most diverse and dynamic economies in the country. Boasting an overall office market base of more than 74 million square feet, and with five consecutive quarters of positive net absorption, San Diego is poised for sustained growth for both our clients and our firm.” 

Jerry Keeney brings to Avison Young 25 years of commercial real estate experience in the U.S. and Asia. He has extensive experience with tenant representation, leasing and investment sales. Prior to joining Avison Young, he spent two years as a life sciences property sales and leasing broker with Cassidy Turley-BRE Commercial in San Diego. During each year of his tenure with Cassidy Turley-BRE Commercial, he ranked as a Top 5 producer.

Before moving to Cassidy Turley, Keeney spent eight years with CBRE in San Diego, where he served as Senior Vice-President and was a Top 10 producer for the latter five years. From 2000-2001, he served as Western Sales Director for the company now known as Loopnet (acquired by CoStar in 2012) in Los Angeles. He moved to Loopnet from CBRE’s Hawaii office, where he held the post of Managing Director. Keeney also held Managing Director positions with the John Buck Company and C.Y. Leung & Company in Hong Kong between 1995 and 2000. He also worked in Hong Kong with Jones Lang LaSalle (1993-1995), specializing in tenant representation, after commencing his commercial real estate career with CBRE in San Diego (1988-1993).

Keeney is a member of BIOCOM, the largest regional life science association in the world, and is a private investor in various biotech startup companies in San Diego. He is also active in his community, serving as a director and coach with Rancho Santa Fe Little League. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in international relations from the University of San Diego.

“I am thrilled to have this opportunity to open and build Avison Young’s San Diego office,” says Keeney. “Having had the unique opportunity to open and build offices in Hong Kong, Hawaii and San Diego, I look forward to leveraging my experience and entrepreneurial acumen as we pursue our strategy in Southern California. Avison Young’s commitment to its long-term growth strategy and vision to build the leading global commercial real estate services firm is something I am excited to be a part of. I am very impressed with the company’s innovative client-service model and high-integrity partnership culture.”

Encompassing 4,200 square miles in the southwestern corner of California, San Diego County is home to more than 3.2 million people. It is the second most populous county in California behind Los Angeles County, reflecting a growth of 14.3% since 2000. By 2020, San Diego County’s population is expected to reach 3.5 million. The median age is 34 with a median income of $70,000. From 2013 to 2016, the average annual job growth rate is forecasted to be 3% according to the County of San Diego. More than $17 billion of tourism dollars are generated for San Diego annually.

The University Towne Centre office market is a burgeoning, multi-faceted business environment. Influenced by multiple education and research institutions such as The Scripps Research Institute, University of California-San Diego, University of San Diego and nearby San Diego State, this intellectual convergence has created a hotbed for the biotech, high-tech and healthcare industries. Rounding out the diverse tenant base are many prominent financial services organizations and law firms.  

Avison Young was a winner of Canada’s Best Managed Companies program in 2011 and the company announced last month that it had requalified in 2012 to maintain its status as a Best Managed company.

Founded in 1978, Avison Young is Canada’s largest independently-owned commercial real estate services company. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Avison Young is also the largest Canadian-owned, principal-managed commercial real estate brokerage firm in North America. Comprising more than 1,200 real estate professionals in 44 offices across Canada and the U.S., the full-service commercial real estate company provides value-added, client-centric investment sales, leasing, advisory, management, financing and mortgage placement services to owners and occupiers of office, retail, industrial and multi-residential properties.


For further information/comment/photos:

Sherry Quan, National Director of Communications & Media Relations, Avison Young:  (604) 647-5098; cell: (604) 726-0959

Mark Rose, Chair and CEO, Avison Young: (416) 673-4028

Earl Webb, President, U.S. Operations, Avison Young: (312) 957-7610

Jerry Keeney, Principal, Avison Young: (858) 201-7070

Avison Young’s new San Diego, CA office will be located at: 4225 Executive Square, Suite 600, La Jolla CA, 92037, (858) 201-7070

Avison Young was a winner of Canada’s Best Managed Companies program in 2011 and requalified in 2012 to maintain its status as a Best Managed company.

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