Taking an already established brand and growing it by more than 50% in just over two years would be an amazing feat for any business — but for Royal LePage Commercial, it's just the beginning.
The company has quickly earned the title of the largest and fastest-growing commercial real estate brand in Canada, with more than 600 sales representatives across the country. That growth, spearheaded by Royal LePage Commercial National Director Damon Conrad, came about as part of a strategic plan — implemented over the past two years — to dominate in Canada's secondary and tertiary markets.
"That's where we see real estate going," Conrad said. "Many businesses cannot afford to be in the major cities, so they're positioning themselves a little bit further out, and we are the first feet on the street in those markets."
This has meant focusing on markets like Niagara-St. Catharines, Kitchener-Cambridge- Guelph, Kingston, and London in southern Ontario, and even reaching into more northern markets like Sudbury and Thunder Bay. Secondary cities in Quebec, like Gatineau and Sherbrooke, have also proven successful, and the brand is in the process of opening standalone commercial offices in Atlantic Canada and British Columbia.
This strategy is paying off in a big way. Royal LePage Commercial grew by 49 agents in the first eight weeks of 2023 alone — another step towards Conrad's goal of reaching 1,000 commercial agents in the next three to five years.
"The argument was always: you're not going to be able to beat the international commercial shops at their game because they've been doing it for so long," Conrad said. "But two years ago, when Phil Soper, Royal LePage President & CEO, hired me to run this brand, it was a clean slate. He said, 'What we really want to focus on is differentiating ourselves from other brands in the market.'"
Now, Royal LePage Commercial far exceeds the size of its competitors. As of Q1 2023, Colliers had 422 brokers — roughly 180 fewer than the 603 sales representatives Royal LePage Commercial has. Royal LePage Commercial also outpaces CBRE with its 402 brokers, Avison Young with its 226, and Cushman & Wakefield with its 291.
And Conrad plans to continue growing that gap.
Of course, Royal LePage Commercial's success has been multifaceted. They remain competitive in primary markets, and with the ongoing high demand for commercial spaces, this has helped to attract more and more agents.
"As residential activity cooled, a lot of agents tried to pivot and undertake some commercial opportunities for their clients and for themselves, so we've gained a lot," Conrad said. "We have also recruited plenty of agents from our competition, who love the flexibility and all the exposure we've received due to our coast-to-coast network growth."
What's also been a big draw, Conrad says, is access to the extensive network of more than 20,000 agents across all Royal LePage brands, which lends itself to a more collaborative experience.
"We offer turnkey marketing services, research services, virtual meetings, webinars and coffee chats," Conrad said. "We promote operating as more of a collective, rather than in silos."
This Canada-wide connection is also what allows Royal LePage Commercial agents to offer their clients top-notch local expertise with highly sought after national exposure.
As Conrad notes, whether that means expanding into Kelowna or Corner Brook, Timmins or Sarnia, "we want to have a Royal LePage Commercial agent everywhere there is a Canadian business."
This article was produced in partnership with STOREYS Custom Studio.