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Self-storage superstars join Cushman & Wakefield

The Mele Group, a team of 16, will be based in commercial brokerage's Tampa office

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  • | 6:00 a.m. February 8, 2019
COURTESY PHOTO — Mike Mele, whose team specializes in self-storage properties, has joined commercial brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield.
COURTESY PHOTO — Mike Mele, whose team specializes in self-storage properties, has joined commercial brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield.
  • Commercial Real Estate
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The Mele Group, one of the nation’s leading commercial real estate brokerage teams specializing in the self-storage sector, have joined Cushman & Wakefield and will be based out of the firm’s Tampa office.

The move shifts 16 brokers and support staff in four states and the District of Columbia from rival brokerage Marcus & Millichap.

Since Mike Mele formed the group in 1999, his team has closed nearly 350 self-storage transactions valued at more than $3.5 billion. In 2018, it completed nearly 50 deals involving 63 different properties.

“We’re a nationally known group, but Cushman & Wakefield gives us the opportunity to expand and be a true national operator,” says Mele, who has been named a vice chairman at Cushman & Wakefield.

“They have incredible internal support, superior research within the industry and they cater better to larger teams, companies and institutional business,” he adds. “The move provides us with a better opportunity to compete.”

Mele, Executive Managing Director Luke Elliott and Senior Associate Brian Fulton will work in Tampa, along with nine support professionals. Other members of the Mele Group operate out of Bethesda, Md.; Tulsa, Okla.; Tempe, Ariz.; and Washington, D.C.

Mele’s team will work in conjunction with Cushman & Wakefield’s existing self-storage practice group, which is located in Phoenix, San Diego and Dallas.

The self-storage sector has gained widespread investor attention over the past five years because it historically dovetails with the popularity of the multifamily rental business, which has reached record levels since 2013 nationally in terms of new units delivered.

The Mele Group’s move marks the second time this month that Cushman & Wakefield has benefitted from a move from Marcus & Millichap. In early January, a multifamily team led by Michael Donaldson and Nicholas Meoli unveiled plans to join Cushman & Wakefield’s Florida Multifamily Investment Sales Team.

Meoli and Donaldson, together with Senior Financial Analyst Bradley Black and Brokerage Coordinators Leesa Fallon and Tiffany Panka, will also be based out of the brokerage’s Tampa office.

Larry Richey, Cushman & Wakefield’s Florida Managing Principal, described the Donaldson/Meoli team in a statement as “one of the top multifamily teams in the entire Southeast.”

Meoli and Donaldson, who have been named executive directors at Cushman & Wakefield, will focus on expanding the firm’s private equity clientele throughout Tampa Bay, Central and North Florida.

Since 2012, when the pair began working together at Marcus & Millichap, they have closed in excess of $1.4 billion in sales involving more than 27,000 apartment units.





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