A former Coldwell Banker team is bringing the international real estate brand Engel & Völkers to Chicago.

The Ames Group, which is headed by Jennifer Ames, is opening the German-founded Engel & Völkers franchise and bringing roughly $115 million in sales volume to the new office.

“Buyers come from all over the world,” Ames said in a statement. “The Engel & Völkers global network enables us to showcase our listings to buyers far beyond our city limits. Another significant point of differentiation with Engel & Völkers is the emphasis on quality.”

In 2017, Ames’ team ranked eighth in Illinois on the Real Trends list of best agents by sales volume. She founded the team 11 years ago and it has passed the $100 million mark every year since 2012.

Joining Ames in founding the Chicago Engel & Völkers office is Kai Schirmacher, who was born about 60 miles from the company’s global headquarters in Hamburg, Germany.

“I have been aware of Engel & Völkers for many years, as they are the premier brand in Europe,” Schirmacher said. “Consistently on the cutting edge of marketing and technology, I am very excited to affiliate with such a distinguished and respected company making its mark on the Americas.”

The expansion for the brand gives the company its first presence in one of the country’s largest cities, bringing the total number of U.S. shops to approximately 150, with another 3,000 real estate advisors. Globally, Engel & Völkers boasts more than 11,000 real estate professionals in 30 countries.

“As the third largest city in the United States and a gateway to the West, Chicago is an extremely significant market within our expansion strategy,” said Anthony Hitt, president and CEO of Engel & Völkers Americas. “[Ames’] passion for real estate, commitment to quality, and dedication to upholding the highest standards of client service mirror our brand in every way. She is a true industry thought leader with a deep knowledge of the local real estate market, and we’re thrilled to have her leading our flagship location in Chicago.”

The flagship office – which Ames said will feel more like an upscale retail shop than an office, with inviting window displays of homes for sale – will be located on the corner of Fullerton and Clark streets in the East Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago.

Email Patrick Kearns

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