Michael Gerard is Marketing Director at GRS Group

Michael Gerard is Marketing Director at GRS Group

If you’ve been to any commercial real estate conference where GRS Group has a presence, it’s more than likely you’ve run into our marketing guru Michael Gerard. He can be found vibrantly shaking the hands of attendees, whether at a GRS Group booth or GRS-hosted reception, enthusiastically explaining the services GRS Group provides and querying others about what their firms do. He also likes to snap a lot of great gallery photos of event attendees. Gerard was no different at the recent Connect Inland Empire show, in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., where GRS Group hosted the cocktail reception.

What was the mood like at the conference compared to other shows that you attend?

I was surprised. There is a lot of passion in the Inland Empire’s commercial real estate industry that I think people outside of the area may not realize. The event was well attended and vibrant, and there was a real sense of a tight-knit community that is serious about getting things done and further putting this region on the map.

What is there to be excited about in the area?

As many in the industry know, the Inland Empire is experiencing a major industrial boom. Mega projects are going up all over the region, housing distribution centers for the biggest names in e-commerce and traditional retail. Plus, there is a lot of manufacturing starting to take place, as companies have realized that it might make more sense to build here than deal with the transportation costs of shipping products from China. This means that there is serious job growth here now, and a lot more to come in the future–which is very welcome in these communities, which were hit extremely hard during the recession.

How is the area getting promoted?

The interesting thing about the Inland Empire is that the counties of Riverside and San Bernardino, and many of the cities within them, are extremely business-friendly and proactive about attracting new development.  This is not a trait much of California is known for. Municipal officials are running their locales much like business owners reaching out to potential clients, looking for ways to spur more growth.

What other types of developments are happening?

The show was held in an open-air retail center called Victoria Gardens, which is doing very well. As the population in the area increases with more job growth, there is going to be more demand from additional retailers. There is also bound to be more multifamily development to support all of the workers coming in. Plus, there’s a chance that as the area becomes more vibrant. More companies will build offices here to attract residents who are currently making the lengthy commute to Los Angeles County and would rather stay closer to home.

How does GRS Group fit into the picture in the Inland Empire?

As this growth continues, developers and investors are going to need to take are of due-diligence and transaction/project management needs. Our group of companies contain experts to help with everything from financial advisory to title insurance, assessment services, construction project management, transaction management and much more. Our teams are excited to continue expanding our work in the booming IE!