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Brokerage Beat: News from Compass, C21, SERHANT., Real, ERA Doty, BHHS PenFed 

Compass nabs AZ brokerage, Century 21 gains NY affiliate, SERHANT. adds 6 new markets, Real reaches 10k agents, ERA Doty expands, BHHS PenFed acquires Arista.

Updated April 8, 2023
7 minutes

Editor's note: The brokerage business is a busy one, with frequent moves, mergers and milestones. Here we highlight some of the latest activity among brokerages across the U.S.

Compass enters Arizona with addition of Launch

Launch Real Estate, a Phoenix-area independent brokerage with more than 300 agents, has signed on with Compass.

Launch Real Estate and Compass logos.

Launch was co-founded by John Vatistas, CEO, and Sean Zimmerman, president, more than seven years ago. Launch agent Chris Karas told the Phoenix Business Journal that the leaders already had a relationship with Compass founder and CEO Robert Reffkin.

"They talked in the past," Karas said. "This year, it made sense for Compass to come to Arizona. We were able to strike an incredible partnership that allows all our agents in Arizona to take advantage of what Compass has to offer."

In a news release, Vatistas said his firm would align well with Compass. "At Launch, we have a proud culture of collaboration, and joining Compass allows us to build on that foundation throughout Arizona and nationally," said Vatistas. "We have the same values and commitment to innovation and are very impressed with the formidable reputation of the Compass brand. Honestly, I do not want to entertain the idea of competing with them, as they are simply in a league of their own," he added.

Launch is an agent-owned brokerage and is the No. 1 producing independent office in Scottsdale, according to the news release.

Established Ellenville, NY, firm joins Century 21

Stoeckeler Real Estate Services, a boutique firm with deep roots in the Western Ulster County real estate market, has affiliated with Century 21 Real Estate.

Based in Ellenville, NY, Century 21 Stoeckeler Real Estate is led by broker/owner and industry veteran Mary Sheeley.

Mary Sheeley, Century 21 Stoeckeler Real Estate
Mary Sheeley, Century 21 Stoeckeler Real Estate.

Since starting her career in real estate in 2008, Sheeley has earned top producer status in the Hudson Valley Catskills MLS for five years running and was 2022's leader in single home sales in Wawarsing, NY, according to OneKey MLS.

The firm was originally founded some 50 years ago by Joseph Stoeckeler Sr. and then passed on to his son, Joseph Jr., Sheeley's son-in-law. 

"I know that I'm more than capable of sustaining our team's success into the future, but at the same time I recognize the opportunity to work smarter, not harder," said Sheeley.

"Since coming into ownership a few years ago, I've realized on more than one occasion that we sometimes try to reinvent the wheel, particularly with technology. …Our affiliation means that we can maintain our strong local identity while also having access to the tools and technology to bring our team into the future," Sheeley said.

SERHANT. expands into new East Coast markets

Celeb agent Ryan Serhant of "Million Dollar Listing: New York" has expanded his empire adding SERHANT. offices in Florida, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, North Carolina and South Carolina. 

Ryan Serhant, SERHANT.
Ryan Serhant, SERHANT.

The firm added three new offices in Florida and one in each of the other states, staffed by local agents.

"Now is the right time," Serhant said in a faux-news conference announcement on Instagram. "Half of all Fortune 500 companies were founded in a crisis. This company was founded in the depths of Covid. When everyone else pulls back, we move forward."

Longtime Serhant broker Ashlei De Souza will lead the Connecticut office, while Andrea Desy Edrei, who heads up the luxury team Societe Select, will lead the Philadelphia office. In New Jersey, Michele Zyska is joining Serhant after a stint with Compass. 

The Miami office will be run by Mariana Niro and Matt Van Wie, with Yasser Ponce serving as regional director of sales. In Palm Beach County, Christian Prakas will cover DelRay Beach and Boca Raton.

Serhant's North Carolina team will be led by Josh and Charlene Dearing while Christopher Bowes will lead the South Carolina office.

The Real Brokerage hits agent count milestone with military-focused expansion

The Real Brokerage Inc. has pushed past the 10,000 agent mark with the merger of military-focused Sentry Residential.

Real will leverage the addition of Sentry along with Real's existing 500-plus military-focused agents to launch a Real Military Division, the first of several planned specialty divisions.

Mike Chiesl and Daniel DeVille, Sentry Residential.
Mike Chiesl and Daniel DeVille, Sentry Residential.

Sentry brings strong relationships with groups like the U.S. Department of Defense in supporting service personnel with housing and career needs. It has helped more than 3,000 military families and veterans buy homes and provided a career path for hundreds of military-affiliated personnel across the 74 markets in 24 states in which it operates. 

"Surpassing 10,000 agents is a significant milestone," said Real Chairman and CEO Tamir Poleg. "The fact that we've grown from just over 8,000 agents at year-end to more than 10,000 today, reinforces that our agent-centric model and the community we are building at Real is unlike any other in the industry." 

Mike Chiesl, a top-producing San Diego real estate broker and decorated U.S. Marine Corps Veteran, and Daniel DeVille, the son of an Air Force Veteran and successful entrepreneur, launched Sentry in 2018 with a vision of becoming the first national brokerage firm dedicated to improving the lives of military families for generations through homeownership.

Arkansas' ERA Doty Real Estate acquires Gilbert Realty Group

ERA Real Estate's top all-around company for 2022, ERA Doty Real Estate, has joined forces with Gilbert Realty Group based in Mountain Home, Arkansas.

ERA Doty serves northeast, north central, central and southern Arkansas. The addition of the Gilbert Realty Group, based in Mountain Home, strengthens the firm's position in northwestern and north central Arkansas.

Steve Doty, ERA Doty Real Estate, and Joan Gilbert, Gilbert Realty Group.
Steve Doty, ERA Doty Real Estate, and Joan Gilbert, Gilbert Realty Group.

With roots dating back to 1969, Gilbert Realty Group serves the Ozarks and Twin Lakes area. Gilbert Realty Group's owner Joan Gilbert has assumed the role of executive broker of the combined companies.

Steve Doty, broker/owner of ERA Doty Real Estate, said the addition brings the company up to six offices and 160 agents who were responsible for $322 million in sales volume in 2022. 

"Bringing Joan and her team into our company is the culmination of a childhood dream for me," said Doty. "I grew up fishing on Bull Shoals Lake and Lake Norfolk and dreamed of owning one of the beautiful lakefront homes. As an adult, I was lucky enough to buy one and have come to treasure the time I spend in this beautiful place."

"I am confident that we are in great hands under Steve's proven leadership, and that he will ensure the continued success for our team here in God's Country," Gilbert said. "We are thrilled to be part of the ERA Doty Real Estate family."

With this acquisition, Doty's fourth since starting the brokerage in the early 2000s, ERA Doty Real Estate serves 80% of Arkansas' counties.

Spotsylvania brokerage joins Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty has announced a merger with Arista Real Estate in Spotsylvania, Va.

Heather Krause, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty.
Heather Krause, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty.

Arista Real Estate, a  boutique real estate firm in Spotsylvania County, is now branded as Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty. Founded in 2014 by Heather Krause, the current location serves as PenFed Realty's Spotsylvania branch office, expanding the company's growing presence along Virginia's I-95 corridor.

Arista's full roster of sales professionals will continue serving the region from the Spotsylvania office, now under the PenFed banner.

"I am honored to welcome Heather and the entire team of agents of Arista Real Estate to the PenFed Realty family," said Dan Lesher, senior vice president, Central Virginia.

"We're very excited to join forces with PenFed Realty," said Krause. "The strength of the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brand and the company's dedication to supporting their sales professionals will provide incredible new opportunities for our agents, and I'm thrilled to remain part of their professional growth."

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