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Inside the pitching war for new development projects

The closest parallel would be the “Mad Men”-era advertising business, when a huge account could set an agency up for years. But today’s brokerages aren’t dealing with executives from Pan Am or Philip Morris who might have been wooed by a killer Don Draper slogan. The masters of their fate are instead hard-nosed builders such as JDS Development Group, HFZ Capital Group and Extell Development Company that are looking for someone who buyers and lenders would be comfortable with. “Just as important as the firm we select to work with on a project are the specific individuals that make up the sales team from that firm,” said JDS Chief Executive Officer Michael Stern.

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