BBJ Fast 50 Rankings 2021: Meet the region's third fastest growing firm
BALTIMORE, MD November 5, 2021
No. 3 Chasen Cos.
Three-year growth rate: 122.24%
2020 revenue: $25.53 million
Top local executive: Brandon Chasen, CEO
Industry: Real estate
What has been your strongest driver of growth in the last couple of years?
Our business model and ability to embrace evolution.
We have refined our business model to focus on purchasing Class C assets in historic areas of Baltimore and upgrading them to Class A. Each living and workspace is intentionally designed to provide a boutique setting, with moderate rents, commercial space, and outsourced amenities — all while maintaining the historic heritage of the property. Our commitment to drastically revitalizing communities has proven to be valuable both for Baltimore and our company.
We also embrace evolution. We constantly identify growth opportunities and follow a clear, consistent process to determine the right path forward. Our team applies investment principles, engages experts and moves with decisiveness and speed when our analysis results in a profitable return.
This approach has led us to become even more multi-faceted over the last year, diversifying our investment strategy into yacht charters — a global industry that is expected to reach $17.19 billion by 2026.
How has your company shifted operations and adapted to the pandemic?
First, we added a new level of accountability to our team. Due to pandemic restrictions, we were limited to 10 people in one place at one time for most of 2020. We brainstormed and hammered down new strategies, systems and processes to make sure that safety and health were first and foremost. Then we pushed forward and made sure that our hundreds of subcontractors fell in line with what we thought was going to be the new standard of excellence. Our project managers were managing less at a single time — improving our quality and changing our workflow for the best.
We also shifted to a virtual strategy for touring properties. When Covid hit, we quickly evolved our process to leverage technology that enabled us to offer guided virtual tours and virtual reality experiences. These solutions have helped us to facilitate exponentially more tours because they are so accessible to tenants. We went from roughly five in-person tours per day to today’s average of 50 to 100 virtual tours per day.
What new or ongoing growth opportunities do you foresee in the next few years?
First, yacht charters represent a diversification into an industry with many similarities to real estate. Both have varying classes of tangible assets with a clear trackable market value that can be significantly increased with modernization. When operated successfully, real estate and yacht charters can produce a profitable operating cash flow.
Just as we found success in our real estate business by upgrading Class C assets to Class A, we found the same opportunity in the yacht charter industry — with both of our yacht charters in the Bahamas booking up well into 2022.