CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG) Q1 2019 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

May 08, 2019 • 08:30 am ET


CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG) Q1 2019 Earnings Conference Call Transcript


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Greetings and welcome to the CBRE First Quarter 2019 Earnings Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. A question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

I would now like to turn the conference over to your host, Mr. Brad Burke, Investor Relations for CBRE. Thank you. You may begin.

Brad Burke

Thank you and welcome to CBRE's first quarter 2019 earnings conference call. Earlier today we issued a press release announcing our financial results and it is posted on our website On the Investor Relations page of our website, you will find a presentation slide deck that you can use to follow along with our prepared remarks. This presentation contains forward-looking statements. These include statements regarding CBRE's future growth momentum, operations, market share, business outlook, foreign currency impact, and financial performance expectations. These statements should be considered estimates only and actual results may ultimately differ from these estimates.

For a full discussion of the risks and other factors that may impact these forward-looking statements, please refer to our first quarter 2019 earnings report furnished on Form 8-K and our most recent Annual Report filed on Form 10-K. During our remarks, we may refer to certain non-GAAP financial measures as defined by SEC regulations. Where required by these regulations, we have provided reconciliations to what we believe are the most directly comparable GAAP measures. These reconciliations together with explanations of these measures can be found within the appendix of this presentation. Additionally, all revenue and fee revenue growth rate percentages cited in our remarks are in local currency, unless otherwise stated.

Please turn to Slide 3. Participating on our call today are Bob Sulentic, our President and Chief Executive Officer, and Jim Groch, our Chief Financial Officer and Chief Investment Officer. Now please turn to Slide 4, as I turn the call over to Bob.

Robert Sulentic

Thank you, Brad. And good morning everyone. CBRE had an excellent start to 2019 as the positive momentum we experienced last year carried over into the first quarter. Strong operating leverage across each of our three business segments drove increases of 29% in adjusted EBITDA and 46% in adjusted EPS. The organizational changes we announced last year are improving our lines of business and helping to make us a more efficient client-focused company. For example, our two real estate services segments, Advisory Services and Global Workplace Solutions realized a combined 190 basis point increase in adjusted EBITDA margins from last year's first quarter.

Revenue growth was paced by another outstanding quarter for leasing, which increased by 22%. Leasing continues to benefit from both solid market fundamentals and market share gains. These gains are being driven by an offering for both one-off transactions and account-based clients that is increasingly differentiated within our industry. Leasing growth is also supported by strong recruiting. We are able to attract talented producers who tell us they can achieve more at CBRE than they can anywhere else. This speaks to