Heitman Financial, LLC

Client Situation

Heitman is a leading institutional advisor for real estate investment management. They manage and control billions of dollars worth of real estate including office buildings, so they’re experts and have very high standards when it comes to their own premises. In 2000, Heitman’s leadership changed hands and there was a strong desire to update their office space to communicate a new message about their firm. They selected Savills Studley to represent them, resulting in the accomplishment of all of their goals, including a relocation to a new development in 2003.

We were invited to compete again for their business in 2012 and were once again selected. With our help, Heitman had expanded their space in recent years but were once again experiencing growth. While they were open to finding a way to expand within their building, in-depth meetings revealed they were also interested in seriously evaluating the options in the market. Additionally, we determined that they would consider re-thinking the way they were utilizing space, including moving from an office-intensive approach to a much more open space plan.

Consideration Analysis

Because Heitman’s business is real estate investment advisory, they prize rigorous analysis and decision-making that can withstand scrutiny. The Savills Studley team had to explore every possible option on their behalf to do due diligence to their investors. We also had to be able to support all our recommendations so that they could answer questions from partners, all of whom are real-estate experts.

Savills Studley guided Heitman through the local market evaluation. We found two viable relocation options for them – both nearby on Wacker Drive. Using the leverage of viable relocation alternatives, we were able to bring their landlord to the table to aggressively price a renewal deal in their current building. By showing their landlord how much more efficient Heitman could be in an open configuration in a new building, we achieved a renewal deal much more favorable than outside options.


After fully negotiating a renewal lease, we helped Heitman develop a new workplace strategy that would allow them to accommodate more people in the same space. Our negotiated restructuring facilitated them moving people out of offices and into a more collaborative environment. Ultimately, Heitman achieved 15% head-count growth with no additional square footage.

Finally, as a bonus, we convinced the landlord to install a new power switchgear at their cost which eliminated the power problems that had emerged in the recent years.

Summary Information

  • Property: 191 North Wacker Drive,