Category Archives: Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Adds Managing Director for Europe, Middle East and Africa

(BRK.A), (BRK.B)

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has announced that Mitchell Lewis will represent the real estate brokerage network as managing director, EMEA.

Lewis will oversee franchise development and operations in key markets throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

According to a statement by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Lewis brings vast international franchise sales and operations experience to his position, first at Cendant Corporation where he managed the global expansion and deal negotiations for Century 21, Coldwell Banker, Coldwell Banker Commercial and ERA. For the next decade at Realogy Corporation, he grew the global presence and enhanced the processes and systems for the same brokerage networks as well as Sotheby’s International Realty.

Most recently, Lewis served as the managing director of Asia Pacific for Christie’s International Real Estate, where he established the network’s operational presence and helped lead the brand’s global development. He also founded Munich-based Counterparts Advisory LLC to consult for consumer brands seeking franchise expansion and operational guidance around the world.

“Mitch Lewis is exactly the right professional to help us expand Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices,” said Peter Turtzo, SVP of International Operations. “He is an authority on international franchising having generated success at every turn. His extensive experience and professional acumen are true assets; he will indeed help us take our network global, far beyond its current presence in the United States.”

Lewis responded: “I am honored by the opportunity to assist Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in its global expansion. The Berkshire Hathaway name is respected around the world, which gives Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices an advantage. I’m eager to explore target markets and work with franchisee candidates to see how the brand can help them grow and enhance profitability of their brokerage businesses.”

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices announced international expansion plans in May with the simultaneous launch of a powerful, new property search platform on its website, www.berkshirehathawayhs.com. Global shoppers of U.S. real estate may translate the site in 10 languages, and their property searches yield all listings in any city serviced by a Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices franchisee. The network also initiated a listing syndication program that broadcasts its U.S. franchisees’ listings to real estate websites worldwide.

“These resources open gateways to the world for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ U.S. affiliates long before a global franchise sales effort begins,” said Lewis. “This demonstrates careful planning and foresight by the brand to do things right the first time. In fact, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has exhibited extreme levels of due diligence, prudence and patience in its international expansion strategy.”

Lewis said his initial target markets will include major financial hubs along with destination and feeder markets throughout the EMEA region that exhibit stability in the property sector and where Berkshire Hathaway’s corporate name recognition runs high.

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices CEO Gino Blefari welcomed Lewis in his new role.

“Mitch is a globally astute executive who knows international franchise development and operations from all angles, and further understands the diligence we need to uphold the integrity of our brand name as we affiliate with leading real estate brokerages abroad,” he said. “He’s also an accomplished consultant who helped shape our global strategy and can guide franchisees to maximize their growth potential. We’re proud and confident knowing Mitch will be helping to expand our brokerage network.”

© 2016 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Sets Sail for International Waters

(BRK.A), (BRK.B)

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, the United States-based real estate brokerage franchise network owned by Berkshire Hathaway Inc., has set its sights on international expansion beginning in 2017.

The initial focus of the international expansion is in major financial centers around the world, with countries such as China, Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom being high on the list  Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ Chief Operating Officer and President, Stephen Phillips says.

Phillips said that the company is setting up regional offices that will cover Asia, Europe, and South America.

Also key to its expansion plans is the network launch of a powerful, new property-search platform on its popular www.BerkshireHathawayHS.com website; and a listing-syndication program now broadcasting Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network listings to 70 real estate websites worldwide.

The platform, developed in conjunction with Aliso Viejo, CA-based Real Estate Digital, offers the industry’s most complete search experience for global shoppers of U.S. real estate. With two mouse clicks, consumers may choose to translate the website in any of 10 languages besides English including Chinese, French (European and Canadian), German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazilian and European) and Spanish (European and Latin American). The site also seamlessly converts currency and measurements.

Consumers may then search for homes in any U.S. city or state serviced by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices franchisees. What they find they can’t get on any other single site: full Multiple Listing Service data containing all listings in their search area. By registering on www.BerkshireHathawayHS.com, consumers also gain proprietary “Inside Access” features including the latest pending and sold information, market reports and property-price history.

“Until now, global shoppers of U.S. real estate see only a portion of homes for sale in their searches of states, cities and postal ZIP codes,” explained Gino Blefari, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “When you register and search for U.S. real estate on our website, you see every property for sale in your search area, and then you can filter and sort those searches as you would on other sites. It’s a much more effective way to begin searches of homes in America.”

“Regardless of nationality, today’s home buyers want as much information as possible to make informed decisions on their real estate investments,” said Stephen Phillips, president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “Our website and property-search platform are an indispensable resource for any global buyer of U.S. real estate.”

To complement the home-search platform, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is now broadcasting its network listings abroad. Most of the residential listings priced at $200,000 (USD) and above are now displayed on 70 real estate websites serving consumers in 37 countries on five continents.

“A key priority in global expansion is to help our existing U.S. franchisees earn more business from beyond our borders,” said Peter Turtzo, senior vice president of International Operations for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “Our investment in these resources will help our network capture international client leads and generate transaction opportunities. These resources will also help our existing franchisees win more domestic listings, and recruit and retain more top sales professionals.”

The international expansion will be growing source of revenue for the company, and Phillips says that he expects Asia to be 5%-10% of that revenue.

© 2016 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.