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...the largest acquirer of insurance brokerages in North America...

So they... buy other businesses? Presumably they also have to operate them?

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31 minutes ago, organsnyder said:

So they... buy other businesses? Presumably they also have to operate them?

They own a bunch of locally based insurance agencies that are still managed locally, but probably provide standardized systems and do other things to reduce costs to the local agencies. The local agencies still keep their local name and not Acrisure.  I also think that major insurance carriers like Citizens, State Farm, etc.. like to work with high volume agencies. They may even provide lower rates/premiums? That's what I gleaned from their website (and from working in property/casualty insurance for a short stint right out of college).

https://acrisure.com/agency-partners-2/

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24 minutes ago, organsnyder said:

So they... buy other businesses? Presumably they also have to operate them?

I assume they just happen to be a big acquisition driven operation.   Our company is always buying other wholesale insurance brokerage firms and absorbs them.    Sounds like they are just big into acquisition to grow, and maybe need more room for "back of the house"operations such as accounting.   Their current HQ out on M-6 near Foremost seems pretty new.   I say skip Cascade and come downtown!   Get to work on some incentives GR! :P

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54 minutes ago, Sparty97 said:

So, nobody is moving into town.  Just a local company potentially moving to a new building.  Not a whole lot of "new jobs" in this scenario.

That's what we kept saying about the MLive article. They read the planning commission application incorrectly. Although I will say they're definitely adding jobs. They're in a building that's maybe 45,000 square feet that they share with Campbell Group, and they're potentially moving into a 136,000 sf building. 

16 minutes ago, mpchicago said:

I assume they just happen to be a big acquisition driven operation.   Our company is always buying other wholesale insurance brokerage firms and absorbs them.    Sounds like they are just big into acquisition to grow, and maybe need more room for "back of the house"operations such as accounting.   Their current HQ out on M-6 near Foremost seems pretty new.   I say skip Cascade and come downtown!   Get to work on some incentives GR! :P

It would be nice to see them consider that option.  The office building at Studio Park was going to be 89,000 sf, a bit small (and height restricted apparently with a deed restriction for the residential tower). Swap them out and make the residential tower an office building and the office site a residential building. :)

I believe a bunch of the parking ramp is set aside for those two buildings so Acrisure could probably get their hands on at least some of the parking they'll need. The city could commit to the ramp by Hinman's building to make up the rest. 

Talk about exposure at Studio Park!  120,000 cars a day. 

The footprint of the residential tower is about 12,000 square feet so it'd be a 12 story building. Perrrrfect. 

Shoot, whoever developed it could probably go 15 or 18 floors and probably lease out the extra space with the visibility there.  And give Acrisure room to grow in the future. 

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25 minutes ago, GRDadof3 said:

They own a bunch of locally based insurance agencies that are still managed locally, but probably provide standardized systems and do other things to reduce costs to the local agencies. The local agencies still keep their local name and not Acrisure.  I also think that major insurance carriers like Citizens, State Farm, etc.. like to work with high volume agencies. They may even provide lower rates/premiums? That's what I gleaned from their website (and from working in property/casualty insurance for a short stint right out of college).

https://acrisure.com/agency-partners-2/

Correct, insurance carriers prefer to work with larger agent/brokers who have a higher volume of business.   Sometimes they end up cutting off smaller agents/brokers due to low volume business.   We just picked up a small wholesale operation in OK, that was likely struggling because they did not have the access and relationships we have.  

19 minutes ago, GRDadof3 said:

That's what we kept saying about the MLive article. They read the planning commission application incorrectly. Although I will say they're definitely adding jobs. They're in a building that's maybe 45,000 square feet that they share with Campbell Group, and they're potentially moving into a 136,000 sf building. 

It would be nice to see them consider that option.  The office building at Studio Park was going to be 89,000 sf, a bit small (and height restricted apparently with a deed restriction for the residential tower). Swap them out and make the residential tower an office building and the office site a residential building. :)

I believe a bunch of the parking ramp is set aside for those two buildings so Acrisure could probably get their hands on at least some of the parking they'll need. The city could commit to the ramp by Hinman's building to make up the rest. 

Talk about exposure at Studio Park!  120,000 cars a day. 

 

I'm sure this company would love to be downtown if they could make it work.  Another insurance agency just filled the spec floor at Warner Tower....

Edited by mpchicago
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Based on how far away they currently are from downtown, and where they are considering moving, I doubt the leadership of Accrisure has any actual desire to absorb the extra expenses and taxes(income) that come with being downtown.  That's not a business model that needs a location to recruit creative talent.  As I stated last week this is a non-story that Mlive categorically botched.   The only interesting news is their growth, and potential to perhaps grow into one of the areas major jobs sources. 

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On 2/28/2019 at 11:21 AM, walker said:

. . .  I don't want to sour the deal and seeing how I'm not always right, I'm not going to say my guess.  But after this settles out, I'll come back and say if my guess was right or wrong, and maybe elaborate.      

OK,  Acrisure wasn't my guess.  Never bet on what I say.  I was thinking BDO Seidman. 

  • BDO is locally about the right size for the proposed building (including parking spaces.)
  • BDO is global (and not just a wanna be like Acrisure)
  • BDO is professional (CPA and consulting firm)
  • BDO is in the top ten in their industry globally (I think they are around #5)
     

When it was called Seidman and Seidman, their headquarters was in downtown Grand Rapids.  After a merger when they became part of BDO, their U.S. headquarters moved to Chicago.  So the part of my guess that doesn't fit would be that the new building would have been a "global" headquarters unless someone high-up was tired of Chicago and wanted to move back to Grand Rapids.  I saw it as being more of a regional headquarters. 

When Bill Seidman was alive and active they had a pretty large profile locally and Seidman was in the news nationally as an economic adviser to Presidents Ford, Reagan, and H.W. Bush, and later as the head of  the Resolution Trust Corporation which was tasked with cleaning up the savings and loans mess in the late eighties, and then he finally ended up as a cable news talking head.  After Bill Seidman left the public spotlight and after the merger, the firm has had a much less public profile.  So much less that probably many people haven't heard of them or realized that they're still around. 

If it is Acrisure though, I think that would be better than BDO, since as others have said, they are growing rapidly.  It's possible though that just as they are swallowing smaller insurance agencies, Acrisure could also be swallowed by a larger competitor and Hinman might end up with an empty nondescript  suburban building in the future. 

Edited by walker
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2 hours ago, mpchicago said:

Correct, insurance carriers prefer to work with larger agent/brokers who have a higher volume of business.   Sometimes they end up cutting off smaller agents/brokers due to low volume business.   We just picked up a small wholesale operation in OK, that was likely struggling because they did not have the access and relationships we have.  

I'm sure this company would love to be downtown if they could make it work.  Another insurance agency just filled the spec floor at Warner Tower....

My idea might be DOA, apparently. :P Oh well. 

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Some on here were correct...This is entirely underwhelming. Is Suzanne of Mystery Project fame working over at MLive these days? 

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@walker BDO does have a "Center for Information Management" that's not part of the practice office (out on Kenmoor), and they are looking for new space. So maybe BDO will be in the news in some way, shape or form?

Fun fact, before moving the 99 Monroe to the suburbs, they REALLY wanted to move to the Brassworks building (which either hadn't started, or was just starting to be redeveloped). They brought the exec team up from Chicago to show them the space (5th floor, where the basketball court was). In the middle of the tour, a homeless guy crawled out of a large filing cabinet. They moved to Cascade. LOL ;)

Joe

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12 hours ago, GRLaker said:

Some on here were correct...This is entirely underwhelming. Is Suzanne of Mystery Project fame working over at MLive these days? 

Mlive did one article, got the narrative wrong. Let it go man. :) #namaste

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6 hours ago, joeDowntown said:

Fun fact, before moving the 99 Monroe to the suburbs, they REALLY wanted to move to the Brassworks building (which either hadn't started, or was just starting to be redeveloped). They brought the exec team up from Chicago to show them the space (5th floor, where the basketball court was). In the middle of the tour, a homeless guy crawled out of a large filing cabinet. They moved to Cascade. LOL ;)

Joe

It wasn't me crawling out of that cabinet but I just happen to know that fifth floor basketball court well.  Many decades ago I worked in that building back when they still made stuff out of brass, mostly plumbing parts (I’ve worked in a lot of places.)  I personally didn’t make anything, I was a suit and worked in what would now be called IT.  Among other things, they used to store light bulbs up there.  I would make midnight requisitions up there to get replacement light bulbs for my office since the maintenance people were never in a hurry to replace burnt out or flickering bulbs.  They had a strong union.      

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8 hours ago, walker said:

It wasn't me crawling out of that cabinet but I just happen to know that fifth floor basketball court well.  Many decades ago I worked in that building back when they still made stuff out of brass, mostly plumbing parts (I’ve worked in a lot of places.)  I personally didn’t make anything, I was a suit and worked in what would now be called IT.  Among other things, they used to store light bulbs up there.  I would make midnight requisitions up there to get replacement light bulbs for my office since the maintenance people were never in a hurry to replace burnt out or flickering bulbs.  They had a strong union.      

I never knew about the basketball court.  I worked for a company that was one of the initial tenants (2nd floor).  I'm sure there were other offices, but I only remember us and Founders (I was in my early twenties and loved beer...).

Edited by Sparty97
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3 hours ago, Sparty97 said:

I never knew about the basketball court.  I worked for a company that was one of the initial tenants (2nd floor).  I'm sure there were other offices, but I only remember us and Founders (I was in my early twenties and loved beer...).

Even when I worked there, I don’t think many people knew the basketball court was up there.  Nobody had played basketball up there for years and years.  It was a remnant from a hundred years ago or so when many companies had sports teams to build solidarity and loyalty among their employees.   A brewery might have been a better idea.

I imagine the basketball court is someone’s exposed brick penthouse offices now.  When I worked there the second floor included the very nice paneled main offices, the engineering department along the street facing windows, and the windowless IT department where I worked that was remodeled out of old factory floor space.

Edited by walker

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It was a fabric design company back in the early 2000s. I'm sure it's part of Spectrum now. It was a really cool space! 

I worked in the Brassworks building in 2000 - 2002 and remember when Founders didn't have food (except peanuts) and it wasn't overly busy. Then they got someone to come in at lunch time and serve hot dogs (out of a small boiling pot) from a corner by the bathroom. Who would have thought back then that they would be where they are now. It was nice to grab pitchers of Founders and bring it back to your office. I'm sure people would love that now. :)

Joe

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2 hours ago, joeDowntown said:

It was a fabric design company back in the early 2000s. I'm sure it's part of Spectrum now. It was a really cool space! 

I worked in the Brassworks building in 2000 - 2002 and remember when Founders didn't have food (except peanuts) and it wasn't overly busy. Then they got someone to come in at lunch time and serve hot dogs (out of a small boiling pot) from a corner by the bathroom. Who would have thought back then that they would be where they are now. It was nice to grab pitchers of Founders and bring it back to your office. I'm sure people would love that now. :)

Joe

Dude, I worked in the Icon on Bond office/model across the hall for a short stint. I bet we were there at the same time on more than a few occasions (and didn't know it). 

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6 minutes ago, Pattmost20 said:

It appears Russo's Market has sold. Wonder what will take over at that spot.

Interesting. I wonder what they're doing with the business. AFAIK, it's still open, and that's their only location (since the smaller downtown location closed last year).

Hmm... from the listing:

Quote

Furniture, fixtures, equipment, and SDD Liquor License available for purchase.

 

Edited by organsnyder

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I wondered if something was going on when I was there during the holidays and it looked like they were clearing out inventory. Thought that given the time of year, that was odd - it all makes sense now.

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I was in Russo's today and I asked the cashier. I was told the property was rezoned for recreational marijuana and they had too good of an offer and sold. Sounds like they want to find a new location. We will see if that's how it plays out or not.

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If the Russo’s location is able to be zoned for a dispensary I can only imagine how much a company paid for their building.  It’s crazy out there right now.  The KCLBA has a two contiguous parcels that it has owned since 2014.  We could not give it away, literally.  We got a completely legitimate (the company buying it is already licensed with the State) 6 figure offer for it because its “in the zone.” If vacant land is worth  that much, how much for a primo location like the Russo site?

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11 hours ago, egrguy said:

I was in Russo's today and I asked the cashier. I was told the property was rezoned for recreational marijuana and they had too good of an offer and sold. Sounds like they want to find a new location. We will see if that's how it plays out or not.

From the listing “Please do not approach employees”

Lol, I wonder how often that gets ignored, I see it so often on commercial listings.

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On 3/9/2019 at 9:49 PM, egrguy said:

I was in Russo's today and I asked the cashier. I was told the property was rezoned for recreational marijuana and they had too good of an offer and sold. Sounds like they want to find a new location. We will see if that's how it plays out or not.

I was in Russo's on Saturday too and noticed that the store looked pretty bare bones. I hope they relocate, that deli counter is fantastic. 

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In local mall news, it appears Brookfield Properties has acquired the former Younkers at Rivertown Crossings.  Wonder if they have any plans for it? 

http://www.shoppingcenterbusiness.com/the-latest-news/a-g-realty-completes-auction-of-several-properties-formerly-owned-by-the-bon-ton-stores

 

Edited by walkermat

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30 minutes ago, walkermat said:

In local mall news, it appears Brookfield Properties has acquired the former Younkers at Rivertown Crossings.  Wonder if they have any plans for it? 

http://www.shoppingcenterbusiness.com/the-latest-news/a-g-realty-completes-auction-of-several-properties-formerly-owned-by-the-bon-ton-stores

 

Halloween City??

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