Prudential Sells Real Estate Brokerage Unit to Brookfield

Prudential Sells Real Estate Brokerage Business
The headquarters building of Prudential Financial Inc. stands in Newark, New Jersey. Photographer: Emile Wamsteker/Bloomberg

Prudential Financial Inc., the second-biggest U.S. life insurer, sold its real estate brokerage and relocation business to a unit of Brookfield Asset Management Inc. for proceeds of about $110 million.

The deal with Brookfield Residential Property Services excludes a financing subsidiary with investments in some brokerage franchisees, Newark, New Jersey-based Prudential said today in a statement. The business had a net book value of about $25 million as of Sept. 30, the insurer said in a regulatory filing.

The acquisition makes Brookfield Residential the second-largest global relocation operation and third-largest residential real estate brokerage in North America, Stephanie Slipher, an outside spokeswoman for Brookfield, said in an e-mail.

“This transaction creates a global employee-relocation services and real estate franchising leader,” Graham Badun, chief executive officer of Brookfield Residential, said in a separate statement. “We have now increased the breadth and depth of our service offering.”

Prudential, led by CEO John Strangfeld, has been selling assets to focus on life insurance and retirement products in the U.S. and Japan. The insurer sold its commodities group to Jefferies Group Inc. this year and a stake in a securities brokerage unit to Wells Fargo & Co. in 2009.

Brookfield Asset Management is a Toronto-based investment firm that manages about $150 billion, with interests in both commercial and residential property, power generation and infrastructure projects.

Some brokerages will be able to continue to operate under the Prudential brand based on the terms of their franchise agreements, the companies said in their statements.

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