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CB Commercial and Richard Ellis International Launch CB Richard Ellis as First Truly Global Real Estate Services Company.


-- New Firm Has Over 8,000 Employees in 200+ Offices in 29

Countries -- The Only Global Network with Common Ownership and


-- CB Richard Ellis Well-positioned to Capitalize on

Opportunities Resulting from Corporate Outsourcing, Global

Investment Shifts

-- White, Wirta, Pons and Runciman Named as Geographic Business

Unit Heads

CB Commercial (NYSE:CBG), North America's leading commercial real estate services company, and REI Limited, the premier property services firm that operates outside of the United Kingdom as Richard Ellis, Monday announced that the combined company will operate as "CB Richard Ellis."

CB Richard Ellis is the first truly global real estate services firm, with over 8,000 employees in more than 200 principal offices in 29 countries.

With 147 offices in the United States, Canada and Mexico, CB Commercial is the number-one provider of diversified real estate services in North America.

With extensive coverage in Europe, Africa, South America and the Asia-Pacific region, Richard Ellis is recognized as a leading international property consulting firm. The combined CB Richard Ellis now serves clients through company-owned offices in virtually every major business center in the world.

"Whether it's in the U.S. or around the world, we are where our clients want us to be," said Jim Didion, CB Commercial's chairman and chief executive officer, who retains those posts at the new CB Richard Ellis. "We're excited to have created the first commonly owned, commonly managed global real estate services firm."

Didion added: "As one company, CB Richard Ellis is much more than a loose association or network of separately owned firms -- it's a real marriage born of a common vision and philosophy about the best way to help clients navigate the increasingly complex world of real estate decision-making. All of our clients should benefit from the merger, no matter their size or the scale of their requirements."

Barry White, REI's chief executive who is now vice chairman of CB Richard Ellis' Global Operations Management Board, said: "This is a great time to be in the real estate services business, and a great time for Richard Ellis to join with CB Commercial. CB Richard Ellis provides our professionals with the best possible platform to deliver service, and our clients with the most comprehensive portfolio of corporate real estate and investment services available anywhere."

Geographic Business Unit Heads Named

CB Richard Ellis announced the following appointments with regard to operational leadership of the combined company on a geographic basis: Ray Wirta -- North America; Barry White -- Europe; David Runciman -- Asia; and Francis Pons -- South America. Wirta has been with CB Commercial; White, Runciman and Pons, with Richard Ellis.

Company Targets Corporate Outsourcing, Investment Advisory Opportunities on Global Basis

CB Richard Ellis views the potential for growth in today's global business arena as considerable. Multinational corporations are outsourcing an ever-larger share of their non-core-business activities, including real estate operations and the strategic planning of facilities management and transaction management.

"The growth of companies through mergers and acquisitions is accelerating the rationalization of real estate and the outsourcing of real estate services by businesses whose principal focus is in some other area," Didion said. "The initial drive to outsource was to lower costs, but the concept has evolved to reflect the recognition that quality and continuity of service must be dominant considerations. Through our various quality control systems, other practices and platforms, and the company's cross-border strategic management capabilities, CB Richard Ellis can deliver the quality and continuity that multinational corporate clients require."

CB Richard Ellis boasts a global client list that includes a diverse array of corporations: AT&T, American Express, Bank of America, Bristol Myers Squibb, Cadence, Chase Manhattan, Ford, General Motors, IBM, Kodak, Nortel, Sun Micro Systems, Sybase and Whirlpool, to name just a few.

Another driver behind the CB Commercial/Richard Ellis merger is the increasingly global nature of real estate capital markets, including the investment property sales business in which CB Richard Ellis is the world leader as ranked by consideration value. Once unusual, offshore activities are increasingly common for strategic real estate investors, including Wall Street firms and real estate investment trusts (REITs).

"Institutional investment generally, and real estate investment specifically, is increasingly viewed in a global context," White said. "CB Richard Ellis is able to service cross-border real estate investors with on-the-ground experience and a global service capability that are unequaled in the industry. Further, our local market knowledge worldwide is the basis of a wealth of research and information that is critical to sound real estate decision-making in today's marketplace."

About the Combined Company

With over 6,700 employees, CB Commercial had 1997 revenues of $730 million, while REI, with approximately 1,500 employees, reported 1997 revenues of about $119 million

CB Richard Ellis, with headquarters in Los Angeles, is the largest vertically integrated commercial real estate services company in the world, based on revenues, transaction volume, staff and company-owned principal offices. The firm is widely recognized as the world-market leader in the sales and leasing of income-producing property, and has leadership positions in property and corporate facilities management, corporate advisory services, mortgage banking, investment management and capital markets, appraisal/valuation and market research.

In the United Kingdom, CB Richard Ellis does business under the name CB Commercial Limited.

CB Richard Ellis will continue to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "CBG".

New Name Capitalizes on Two Established Brands

Explaining the rationale for the firm's new name, Didion said: "The name CB Richard Ellis was a natural. It allows us to take advantage of two already well-established brand names in a way that creates immediate positive recognition around the world. The CB Richard Ellis name also communicates our expanded market strength and capabilities, and it assures clients of both firms that the service they have come to depend on will continue, and, in fact, be further enhanced."

The company also said today that in the interest of common branding, its property management arm, which has been known as CB Commercial/Koll Management Services, will operate under the CB Richard Ellis name. The firm manages over 200 million square feet of property for institutional, investor and individual clients.

CB Richard Ellis (NYSE:CBG) is the world's leading real estate services company. With headquarters in Los Angeles with over 8,000 employees worldwide, the company serves real estate owners, investors and occupiers through over 200 principal offices in 29 countries. Services include property sales and leasing, investment property acquisitions and dispositions, property management, corporate advisory services and facilities management, development advisory, mortgage banking, investment management, capital markets, appraisal/valuation and market research. CB Commercial had 1997 revenues in excess of $730 million; REI reported 1997 revenues of approximately $119 million.

This release may contain forward-looking statements as well as historical information. Forward-looking statements, which are included in accordance with the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, may involve known or unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the company's actual results and performance in future periods to be materially different from any future results or performance suggested by the forward-looking statements in this release. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this release. The company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements found herein to reflect any changes in company expectations or results or any change in events.

For more information on CB Richard Ellis, visit the combined company's Internet Web site at

CONTACT: CB Richard Ellis

Cary Brazeman, 213/613-3227 (North America)


Barry White, (44) 171 629 6699 (Outside North America)
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:May 4, 1998
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