On October 19th, Pacific Union International announced that it had acquired San Francisco-based The Mark Company, a premier urban residential marketing and sales firm that has represented more than 10,000 residences and generated more than $5 billion in sales across a number of developments in the Western United States.
Pacific Union CEO Mark A. McLaughlin lauded the acquisition as an essential step toward his firm’s vision of the future, while The Mark Company’s Alan Mark described the deal as a powerful, game-changing partnership that will enable both firms to leverage each other’s expertise.
We sat down with Mark McLaughlin and Alan Mark to discuss how the deal came together and how the two firms will work as one in the future.
What was the impetus for the merger, and why now?
Mark: San Francisco and the Bay Area present a perfect storm of job creation, growing population and limited raw land available for housing. To keep up with demand, new residential developments will be largely high-rise. The Mark Company is the premier sales and marketing firm in the nation for these new residential developments. We believe in investing in people and The Mark Company has the team and capability to take us into this new arena of residential real estate. Our results together combine the best of new sales and resales efforts.
Alan: There is an increasing demand from buyers to live in urban cores, and that trend is anticipated to accelerate. Pacific Union is ranked as the ninth largest brokerage in the country. Their extensive reach combined with our knowledge of buyer preferences, design trends and unique approach to sales and marketing will strategically position us to capitalize on the great opportunity that exists in the marketplace.
How did the deal happen? Who approached whom? Where?
Mark: Pacific Union approached Alan Mark three or four years ago to invest in or acquire the unique expertise Alan Mark and Krysen Heathwood have so uniquely developed together. The timing just seemed right to combine visions and forces to grow a regional or national firm.
Alan: In seeking to expand our business capabilities and deliver client services at the highest industry standards, I recognized the synergy that would be created by joining with Pacific Union. Having worked with Hans Treuenfels and Doug Shaw at Pacific Union earlier in my career, I had some insight into their leadership and capability that would help to create a platform for our success.
What will the merger bring to the market? What services will the new company perform, and what will it mean for developers?
Mark: Pacific Union’s acquisition of The Mark Company will offer developers the deep resources of Pacific Union’s team of 675 professionals, our strong relationships through our Pacific Union China Concierge program, and extended opportunities as an affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate.
Alan: The Mark Company’s services will be enhanced by the resources that Pacific Union brings to the table. We will offer enriched leadership and support teams, more powerful technology and even greater market expertise. The support of a large firm with outstanding broker relationships, top industry experts and international reach in the form of a partnership with Christie’s International brings unmatched competitive advantage for our clients and the residential projects we represent.
What benefit will this merger bring to potential condo buyer?
Mark: Pacific Union’s buyers will have very early visibility into the emerging new development market on the West Coast.
Alan: Our in-depth knowledge of buyer preferences is at the core of our services. Our goal will continue to be to create the optimum buying experience for each individual home buyer.
Will Pacific Union look to expand beyond the Bay Area?
Mark: The Mark Company is a marketing and sales firm offering services throughout the Western United States with actively selling projects in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle and Las Vegas. All necessary resources will be available to The Mark Company to expand relationships with existing and new developers throughout the Pacific Rim.