University of Arizona
REAL ESTATE

CBRE graduates third class from Retailing University

BY Al Urbanski

Todd Caruso

All hail the third graduating class of Retailing University!

Two years ago, the global real estate services company CBRE broke new ground by joining with the University of Arizona to create RU, an online educational program that urges real estate pros to dig deeper into the intricacies of retail.

With this month’s graduation, the 200th CBRE professional completed the rigorous program that delves into store operations, supply chain, inventory management, customer acquisition, and pricing, among other concerns of full-time retailers.

The four-month, online course is designed and taught by faculty of UA’s Terry J. Lundgren Center For Retailing.

“Retailing University provides our real estate professionals with a more holistic view to bring to retail clients,” said CBRE senior managing director (and UA graduate) Todd Caruso. “It’s hard to become expert in these disciplines from a four-month course, but if you can ask the client the right questions while appreciating the challenges they face, I think clients view you as more trusted advisors.”

The newest graduates hailed from 12 different countries and range from senior-level executives to project managers.

“I found the subjects covered in this program helpful in better understanding how retailers think, strategize and set their own goals,” said Ira Kerner, a first VP for CBRE in Saddle Brook, N.J.

Ayaka Saito, a CBRE retail business consultant in Tokyo, said the experience has enabled him to ratchet up the level of communication he shares with his clients. “I now can better understand their point of view and, essentially, speak the same language with them,” he said.

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