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BGC acquires Philadelphia-based Smith Mack

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Brokerage firm BGC Partners Inc. today tacked a third name onto its merged Newmark Grubb Knight Frank subsidiary as it recast a net on commercial real estate powerhouses in New Jersey by acquiring Philadelphia-based Smith Mack.

The deal marks BGC's second aggressive push into the South Jersey market, as the firm added an office in Marlton when it acquired Grubb & Ellis Co. in April, and it will gain a second Marlton office by folding Smith Mack into its NGKF subsidiary. BGC added Woodbridge-based Helios Capital Advisors in October to strengthen its capital markets group.

"Smith Mack has experienced the benefits of the dramatic transformation that has taken place since Newmark Knight Frank and Grubb & Ellis were acquired by BGC Partners … (and) its desire to join NGKF is confirmation that our expanded platform offers clients the best real estate solutions in the industry," said NGKF CEO Barry M. Gosin in a statement.

J. Robert Clements, executive vice president and managing director of NGKF's Philadelphia region, said the move is a logical one, noting Smith Mack and Newmark Knight Frank have been partners since 2009 — two years before BGC purchased the firm in October 2011 and merged it with Grubb & Ellis, which the parent company acquired for $30 million in senior debt.

"BGC's commitment to building up a powerhouse platform already has significantly strengthened our capability to service clients, and we are winning market share in the greater Philadelphia marketplace as a result," Clements said in a statement.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. As a result of the transaction, BGC will maintain New Jersey offices in Marlton, Princeton and Rutherford. NGKF employees will join virtually all of the existing brokerage and advisory professionals at Smith Mack's four offices in Marlton, Philadelphia, Wayne, Pa., and Wilmington, Del.

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