RKF, the independent real estate firm that specializes in retail, announced the formation of its first cross-border office in Toronto, Canada.
The RKF Toronto office will be led by Canadian retail services veteran Steven Alikakos, who will serve as president, Canada and be the firm’s Broker of Record once it receives its license.
RKF’s Canadian expansion comes just weeks after the firm formalized an affiliation with leading U.K. – based retail consulting firm CWM Retail Property Advisors, LLP.
With today’s news, RKF now has a presence in eight major markets including Toronto, which is the largest city in Canada and the fourth largest city in North America.
By expanding into Toronto, RKF will be able to provide its U.S., Canadian and international clients, both landlords and tenants, with access to the firm’s services platform for all of their retail real estate requirements regardless of where they are located.
A growing number of major American retailers have launched stores north of the border in recent years, and retail analysts only expect that trend to increase as competition in the U.S. retail market continues to intensify.
Likewise, the U.S. has seen a wave of expansions from Canadian retailers. With RKF’s enhanced ability to deliver its services throughout the largest North American metro markets, the firm is likely to play a pivotal role in sustaining and accelerating this cross-border retail migration.
Steven Alikakos has more than 22 years of retail leasing expertise working with Canada’s largest and most visible retail landlords and tenants in the most significant retail markets in Canada.
He most recently served as senior vice president and senior manager at DTZ Canada (formerly J.J. Barnicke) and led the firm’s retail department across Canada. Alikakos has worked on numerous high-profile redevelopment projects for many prominent owners, including Allied REIT, CD Capital, Westmont Hospitality Group, GWL Realty Advisors, Brookfield Properties and Slate Properties. He also serves a roster of retailers that includes Brooks Brothers, Zwilling J.A. Henckels, Andrews, Maverick, and many other independents in their expansions into premium outlets, malls and on high streets throughout Canada.
“We are extremely pleased to have launched our first office outside of the U.S. in Canada with Steven Alikakos at the helm,” said RKF chairman & CEO Robert Futterman.
“Toronto has increasingly become known as a global hub for retailers and retail real estate investors, and there are few people who know and understand the retail landscape in Canada better than Steven. I have no doubt that he will attract Canada’s best and brightest retail services professionals as we continue to expand our business both in Canada and the U.S. during the coming months and years. Our clients also will immediately benefit from this expansion given the wealth of great retail opportunities that exist across Canada.”