Avison Young opens new office in Columbia, South Carolina

          Avison Young opens new office in Columbia, South Carolina

PR Newswire

TORONTO, April 9, 2013

Leading Canadian commercial real estate firm opens its 30th office outside
Canada and second office in South Carolina; Bruce Neel becomes Managing

TORONTO, April 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/  - 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  new  office in  Columbia,  South 

The newest American office  represents Avison Young's  30th office outside  of 
Canada, the company's second office in South Carolina, 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, 45  offices 
in 36 markets and from 300 to more than 1,200 real estate professionals across
Canada and the U.S.

Effective immediately, Bruce Neel joins Avison Young as Principal of  Columbia 
Operations, as  well as  Managing Director  of the  Columbia office.  He  will 
oversee the growth and  development of the company's  presence in Columbia  as 
well as manage the day-to-day operations of the office. Neel was most recently
President of Neel Real Estate, Inc. in Irmo, SC.

"Opening a new  office in Columbia,  while continuing to  grow our  Charleston 
operations, is a strategic move that  will allow us to provide a  full-service 
platform in South Carolina," comments Rose. "We are excited to have Bruce join
our rapidly  growing U.S.  platform.  His experience  and background  will  be 
instrumental to  our  organization and  our  South Carolina  expansion  as  we 
continue to  build  our  business  throughout the  region  and  beyond.  South 
Carolina is home to many corporate headquarters and presents a strong regional
growth area for our company."

Avison Young opened its first South Carolina office in May 2012 in Charleston,
with Chris Fraser joining as Principal of South Carolina Operations and Jeremy
Willits as Managing Director of the Charleston office.

"As we  continue our  expansion in  the  key Southeast  U.S. markets,  we  are 
pleased to have someone with Bruce's experience join Avison Young in this  new 
market for our company. This expansion will complement our existing activities
in Charleston as well as in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina," notes Earl  Webb, 
Avison Young's President, U.S. Operations. "We are excited to be expanding the
Avison Young brand and our client-specific, holistic-based solutions  approach 
across the state of South Carolina, and we look forward to continuing to  grow 
this  regional   operation  with   individuals  who   embody  Avison   Young's 
principal-led, client-centric culture."

Effective immediately, Avison Young's new  Columbia office will be located  at 
717 Lady Street, Suite C, Columbia, SC, 29201.

"Given our  growing market  share in  the South  Carolina region,  opening  an 
office in Columbia is the logical next step to creating a seamless network  of 
offices in South Carolina  to serve our valued  clients," says Fraser.  "Bruce 
has been an active  broker in the  Columbia market for  many years. Given  his 
deep relationships with  key decision-makers  in Columbia and  the region,  he 
will grow  our  newest  Avison  Young office  and  our  presence  quickly  and 

He adds: "Columbia is the capital of South Carolina as well as the home of the
University of South Carolina. As  such, state government and higher  education 
play a pivotal role in this market. Moreover, the city's central location will
allow Avison Young  to cover  our clients'  needs throughout  the Midlands  of 
South Carolina, complementing our coastal presence in Charleston and potential
future presence in the upstate."

Neel has  been involved  in the  development, acquisition,  sale, leasing  and 
management of  multi-family,  retail  and  industrial  projects  across  South 
Carolina for the past 18 years. He spent the first 10 years of his real estate
career as a commercial real estate  lender with Wachovia Bank, N.A., where  he 
was Vice-President, Real Estate Financial Services Group. In this role, he was
responsible for the origination, underwriting and closing of construction  and 
permanent loans to developers located in the Columbia and Charleston markets.

During the  next  eight years,  Neel  owned  and managed  his  own  commercial 
brokerage company, Neel Real Estate, Inc., where he assisted investor  clients 
with the acquisition, sale and  management of commercial investment  property. 
Neel holds a  Bachelor of Arts  degree with  a major in  finance from  Wofford 
College in Spartanburg, SC.

"Avison Young's  comprehensive  range  of  real  estate  services  provides  a 
seamless platform to accommodate the needs of our local and national clients,"
says Neel. "Moreover,  Avison Young's  partnership culture  aligns the  firm's 
interests with our  clients, creating a  truly best-in-class service  delivery 
model. The company's unprecedented growth in recent years underscores the fact
that the  market  recognizes  the power  of  this  model. I  look  forward  to 
continuing my career at Avison Young and contributing to its ongoing success."

Columbiais the largest city in the state ofSouth Carolina and also the state
capital, with an estimated population of  130,591 within the city limits.  The 
city is the  center of a  metropolitan statistical area  of more than  780,000 
people, the second  largest within  the state. Columbia  enjoys a  diversified 
economy, with the major employers in  the area being the South Carolina  state 
government, the Palmetto Health hospital system, Blue Cross Blue Shield of SC,
Palmetto GBA, and theUniversity of South Carolina. The corporate headquarters
of Fortune 1000  energy companySCANA are  located in the  Columbia suburb  of 
Cayce. Other major employers include Fort Jackson, the U.S. Army's largest and
most  active  initial-entry   training  installation,and  theUnited   Parcel 
Service,  which  operates  its  Southeastern  Regional  Hub  at   theColumbia 
Metropolitan Airport.  Major  manufacturers  such  as  Square  D,  CMC  Steel, 
Michelin, International  Paper,  PirelliCables,  and  Bose  Corporation  have 
facilities in the  Columbia area.  There are more  than 70  foreign-affiliated 
companies and 14Fortune 500companies in the region.

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  45  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 
(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

• Chris Fraser, Principal of South Carolina Operations, Avison Young: 

• Bruce Neel, Principal of Columbia Operations and Managing Director,
Columbia, Avison Young: 
(803) 298-3010

Avison Young's new Columbia, SC office: 717 Lady Street, Suite C, Columbia,
South Carolina, 29201.


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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• Editors/Reporters: please click on link to view and download photo of Bruce

SOURCE Avison Young Commercial Real Estate (BC)


Media Relations:
Sherry Quan
(604) 647-5098 or (604) 726-0959 cell
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