Chris Smith joins Keller Williams from Latter & Blum. The move comes as major real estate brands compete intensely for top talent.

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Against the backdrop of intense competition for top talent, Keller Williams on Tuesday announced that it has recruited a top agent in New Orleans.

That agent, Chris Smith, has worked in real estate for two decades and joins Keller Williams from Latter & Blum. According to a statement, Smith was the top agent in his city last year by both sales volume and units, and has done more than 5,000 deals since beginning his career.

Chris Smith

Smith cited Keller Williams’ “culture of tremendous kindness and collective strength” as factors that drew him to the brand.

“Their mission is focused on lifting everyone up and helping them reach their fullest potential; this isn’t just shared in words but is recognized as a way of life,” Smith said in the statement. “The cutting-edge tools, bounty of resources and outstanding support are off the charts. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen.”

Smith also said he looks forward to growing his business while at Keller Williams.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Smith spent just under three years at Latter & Blum. Prior to that, he worked for 18 years at Gardner Realtors.

Smith’s move comes as major real estate brands compete intensely for top talent. That competition has long been a feature in the industry, but in prior years many companies tended to emphasize their growing head counts as much as the individual recruits. Both Compass and Keller Williams’ rival eXp Realty, for example, managed to climb into real estate’s upper echelons by rapidly growing their agent ranks.

However, as the market slowed over the last year and a half, most companies in the industry have seen their headcount growth slow significantly. As a result, the competition has tended to focus less on numbers and more on top agents who have a proven track record of getting deals done — or, in other words, agents like Smith.

Jeffrey Doussan Jr.

In Tuesday’s statement, KW New Orleans Operating Principal Jeffrey Doussan Jr. described Smith as “the embodiment of true real estate excellence,” and praised him for “his unparalleled skills and dedication to his clients.”

“We’re thrilled,” Doussan added, “that he has decided to move to the next chapter of his career with KW New Orleans.”

Correction: Smith has done more than 5,000 deals during his career. This story, citing a draft version of a press release, originally included a different number. 

Email Jim Dalrymple II

Keller Williams
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