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Illustration by Lanette Behiry/Real Estate News

Brokerage Beat: News from RE/MAX, ERA, Sotheby's Realty, Christie's RE 

RE/MAX gains another large Ontario firm; ERA Prime acquires Michigan indie; Sotheby's Realty expands in the Central Valley; Christie's RE grows in Belgium.

July 6, 2024
4 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. and globally.

RE/MAX gains 200-agent Canadian firm

Co-broker/owners — and brothers — Gurcharan "Garry" Bhaura and Sukh Bhaura recently converted their large Century 21 office in Brampton, Ontario, to RE/MAX President Realty. 

Gurcharan "Garry" Bhaura and Sukh Bhaura, RE/MAX President Realty.
Gurcharan "Garry" Bhaura and Sukh Bhaura, RE/MAX President Realty.

The affiliation brings more than 200 new agents to RE/MAX, and it represents the brand's second major recent conversion in Ontario after a 130-agent firm announced it was joining RE/MAX last month.

Both brokers have more than 20 years of experience in the industry, including association leadership roles. Sukh Bhaura is a commercial real estate broker and current first vice president of CCIM Central Canada.

Garry Bhaura is the vice chair of the Canadian Real Estate Association and previously served as president of the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board.

Several factors drove their decision to align with RE/MAX, including the brand's strong global presence, technology platforms, marketing resources and networking events, according to a news release.

Garry Bhaura said the move to RE/MAX will help propel the business forward: "Together, we are set to achieve remarkable success in our real estate journey."

ERA gains ground in Michigan 

ERA Prime Real Estate Group has acquired an independent brokerage in the Detroit area.

Willie Ray, ERA Prime Real Estate Group; Mark Higgins, Compass Realty Pros.
Willie Ray, ERA Prime Real Estate Group; Mark Higgins, Compass Realty Pros.

Compass Realty Pros in Southgate, Michigan, is ERA Prime's second acquisition since joining the ERA brand in April 2023. The new office creates a service area that covers more of the Greater Detroit metro region and adds to the firm's existing offices in Farmington and Grand Blanc.

Founded in 2017, ERA Prime Realty Group is operated by Willie Ray III and is a full-service firm with mortgage and title services. Compass Realty Pro was founded by Mark Higgins.

"Joining forces with Mark will create tremendous synergies for our combined company," said Ray. 

"Mark has assembled and developed a highly respected group of real estate professionals who share the same values of collaboration and community. We are both excited about the opportunity to capitalize on the growth that is inherent in the region to grow and expand our company."

Sotheby's Realty expands in Central California

Sotheby's International Realty now has 111 offices in California with the recent addition of a Central Valley firm.

Catrina Girard, Valley's Sotheby's International Realty.
Catrina Girard, Valley's Sotheby's International Realty.

The newest office, Valley Sotheby's International Realty in Modesto, is led by Catrina Girard, a 20-year industry veteran. Along with being a top-producing real estate agent, Girard has a background in financial planning.

"Our mission is to offer our clients personalized, luxury service with a commitment to excellence," said Girard.

"Our affiliation with Sotheby's International Realty enables us to utilize our expertise and local knowledge while leveraging the prestige of the brand and its best-in-class marketing tools and resources."

The new office will serve the Stanislaus, San Joaquin, Merced and Tuolumne counties. 

Philip White, president and CEO of Sotheby's International Realty, said the area is a prime location for expansion. "Buyers are drawn to the region from the Bay Area and beyond to acquire more house and land while maintaining convenient access to major office hubs," White said. "We look forward to supporting the Valley Sotheby's International Realty team as we further expand our presence in California."

Christie's Real Estate opens in Brussels

Christie's International Real Estate has opened its 12th office in Belgium in the capital city of Brussels.

Jean-Marc Delcroix, Christie's International Real Estate Belgium.
Jean-Marc Delcroix, Christie's International Real Estate Belgium.

The new office is led by Jean-Marc Delcroix, who was a commercial director with Sotheby's Realty before joining Christie's.

"Christie's International Real Estate Belgium is a fast-growing company with incredible expertise that has made them a market leader in luxury real estate in Flanders," said Delcroix. "The opportunity to bring the Christie's International Real Estate brand to Brussels and the surrounding area is a great honor and a meaningful challenge."

The global brand is already a fixture in Flanders, the Dutch-speaking region in the north, the company said in a news release. The new Brussels office expands the brokerage's reach to southern Belgium's French-speaking region.

The brokerage also plans to expand into the seaside resort town of Knokke on Belgium's northern coast.

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