Rich DeNicola has real estate in his blood. The newly named COO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate jokes that he was doing floor duty by the time he was five years old.
“Mom would sub-contract me out to do mailings,” said DeNicola, who grew up in a real estate family and worked as general manager for a small family business when he was younger.
The senior VP of franchise sales at BHGRE since 2013 holds an MBA and officially entered the industry 14 years ago when he joined Realogy, BHGRE’s parent company. In fact, he’s worked for every Realogy brand, which include a slew of major real estate franchisors.
Before arriving at BHGRE, he was national vice president of Realogy’s Coldwell Banker in the U.S. and Canada, and he served in a variety of roles within operations and development at Realogy prior to that.
While at BHGRE, DeNicola has brought the number of franchisees up to close to 100, with 350 offices and more than 11,000 agents in the U.S. Canada and the Bahamas.
As COO, DeNicola will report directly to BHGRE’s president and CEO, Sherry Chris, and oversee all aspects of domestic and international business operations, including servicing, financial management and brand oversight of BHGRE’s development strategy. He will start the new position at the year end and will continue his current role until a replacement is found.
“I am thrilled to welcome Rich DeNicola into his new role as Chief Operating Officer,” Chris said. “He has helped lead our brand through its most significant period of growth since our launch. His industry and brand expertise will be incredible assets to our broker/owners and affiliated agents as they continue to build productive and profitable businesses.”
DeNicola replaces former BHGRE COO Daniel Dannenmann, who served in the position for a little over a year and will assume the role of COO and president of one of BHGRE’s largest franchises, BHGRE Bradfield Properties in San Antonio, Texas.
DeNicola said he would like to see BHGRE in markets such as Boston, Denver, Seattle and Charlotte, North Carolina, next.
“Our goal is to continue building our footprint around the U.S.,” he said. “We have very much been focused on the domestic growth throughout U.S. the past few years and we’ve done exceptionally well, growing the franchise network.”
BHGRE’s company culture, support from Realogy, and strong consumer brand recognition continue to attract indie broker owners and those affiliated with other franchisors, according to DeNicola.
Better Homes & Gardens magazine, launched in the early 1920s, is a big part of the company’s branding and counts 40 million monthly readers and 11 million unique monthly website visitors.
Internationally, the magazine maintains strong readership in Australia, India and other parts of Asia, so those are the next logical places to take the real estate brand beyond the U.S., DeNicola said.
“We are very focused on people that have good business operational experience and are of the same mindset that customer service needs to happen at a very high level,” he added. “They are growth-minded individuals who want to grow a strong organization, to fulfill servicing customers and agents in a positive way.”