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Two independent resi brokerages merging, with lofty goals to become “Top 5” team

From left to right: Grigory Pekarsky, Scott Newman, Brad Robbins

Two independent residential brokerages in Chicago are merging in an effort to diversify their business and compete with the biggest brokerages in the city.

Vesta Preferred Realty is merging with Newman Realty to form RNP Realty Group, named after founders Brad Robbins, Scott Newman and Grigory Pekarsky. With the new group, the partners have goals of becoming one of the biggest brokerages in the city, Pekarsky said.

“Now we can compete with the biggest players in the city,” said Pekarsky, who along with Robbins was a partner at Vesta. “Together we’re going to be top five.”

Merging the two brokerages will allow the new group to have a more diverse business, Pekarsky said. Vesta was rental-heavy and represented a lot of home buyers, while Newman was listings-heavy with a luxury and sports division, he said.

“It hits a lot of new territory for us that we probably wouldn’t have access to without bringing them on board,” Pekarsky said. The new team will consolidate into Vesta’s current offices in Wicker Park.

Vesta did $52 million in sales last year with about 135 transactions and Newman did $79 million with 200 transactions. RNP Realty Group will have 35 agents, Pekarsky said.

The move comes as the real estate industry sees increased competition from technology-focused brokerages like Compass and Redfin.

Scott Newman, the broker-owner of Newman Realty, said he wants the new brokerage to retain the “boutique” feel of a small firm while having the technology and customer service to compete with the new players.

The Vesta-Newman merger is the latest large personnel move on Chicago’s resi broker scene.

Last week, John Lawrence moved his Nickel Group to Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Koenig Rubloff. Earlier this year was Compass’s took over Conlon Real Estate in a blockbuster deal.

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