Colliers closes acquisition of engineering firm Maser Consulting

16 July 2020 Consulting.ca

Colliers International, a Toronto-based commercial real estate services and investment firm, has completed its acquisition of Maser Consulting, a Red Bank, New Jersey-based engineering consultancy. The deal, for which financial terms were not disclosed, was announced in March 2020.

The transaction will give Colliers a controlling interest in Maser, with the New Jersey firm’s senior leadership continuing to drive operations and retaining a significant equity stake. Maser will be rebranded as Colliers Engineering Services in the first half of 2021.

Maser was founded in 1984 and offers public and private sector clients a full suite of consulting and engineering design services in buildings, infrastructure, transportation, environmental, and telecom. The firm has more than 1,000 professionals in 34 offices across 12 US states, and booked revenue of US$167 million in 2019.

Colliers closes acquisition of engineering firm Maser Consulting

“Our new partnership with Colliers – the first of its kind in our industry – is the next evolution of our business,” said Richard Maser, Maser founder and chairman. “As we look to significantly grow and scale our business, we are confident that Colliers’ enterprising culture, partnership philosophy, decentralized management style and access to capital, aligns perfectly with our goals.”

Colliers was advised on the transaction by AEC Advisors, an investment banking and corporate finance advisory firm specializing in the architecture, engineering and consulting sector.

The deal will further diversify Colliers’ revenues with high-value engineering and design services. Commercial real estate is notably going through a difficult period as numerous businesses face pandemic-related collapse (retail and hospitality) and other businesses reassess their need for physical offices in a remote work present and future.

Colliers’ stock price fell from $120.53 in February to a nadir of $53.28 in March. The firm’s stock price has since rebounded to $72.63 as of July 14.

“Colliers enters the highly fragmented engineering design services sector as a major player while furthering our strategy of diversifying revenues with another essential, highly valued real estate service offering,” said Jay Hennick, global chairman and CEO of Colliers International. “Our new engineering division not only strengthens our Outsourcing & Advisory segment but also complements our tremendously successful Colliers Project Leaders project management business.”

As such, the real estate company will attempt to grab an increasing piece of the high-margin engineering and design consulting market. Incumbent industry giants Aecom and SNC-Lavalin have in recent months divested and shifted away from low-margin, fixed-price construction contracts to instead focus on consulting work.

The US government is also expected to pour significant amounts of money into public works and infrastructure projects, driven by a need to stimulate a pandemic-hit economy and revitalize aging national infrastructure which dates back to the post-war period.

“By combining their best-in-class service offerings with our globally recognized brand and service platform, we can accelerate our collective growth in the $100 billion engineering design services sector and take advantage of the many opportunities to revitalize aging infrastructure in the U.S,” said Elias Mulamoottil, head of strategic investments at Colliers. 

Founded in 1976, Colliers delivers services in consulting, corporate facilities, investment management, urban planning, property management, and other offerings to commercial real estate users, owners, investors, and developers. The firm has more than 15,000 employees in 68 countries and had revenues of $3 billion in 2019.


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