There’s a memorable scene in director David Fincher’s 2010 drama, “The Social Network,” where Facebook creators Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) and Eduardo Saverin (Andrew Garfield) are discussing the future of social media with Napster creator Sean Parker (Justin Timberlake).
“A million dollars isn’t cool,” Parker says. “You know what’s cool? A billion dollars.”
For Rockford-based Prudential Preferred Realtors, that line of Aaron Sorkin dialogue is now a reality. Prudential, a family-owned company that’s been in business since 1953, recently announced it reached a historic mark on its 60th anniversary, attaining $1 billion in real estate sales for 2013.
Only two other Michigan brokers have accomplished that feat, said Katy Teklinski, director of marketing and new business development. One is a brokerage centered in Traverse City and the other is Real Estate One in Southfield, she said. But Prudential, as far as she knows, is the first West Michigan broker to hit a number that high.
The sales figure represents closed residential and commercial sales volume in the year 2013.
Prudential CEO Steve Fase credited the accomplishment to “hard working, professional sales associates (who) rose up to meet a very active real estate market.”
“We feel that our company has a great reputation, and although a billion is not unprecedented in real estate, it is rare and is a measure that shows that focus, hard work and delivering great service to buyers and sellers certainly pays off,” he said. “While our expansion has led us all over the great state of Michigan, our roots and ties to Grand Rapids, where it all began, are the foundation of our company.”
Prudential was founded as Fase Realty Co. by Donald Fase, Steve’s father. Steve Fase became the owner in 1983, transitioning the company into Prudential Fase Realty in 1989. Since then, it has expanded into a family of five Prudential groups, with three offices in the Grand Rapids area and 550 agents across 36 offices in Michigan and northern Indiana,Teklinskisaid.
After a very busy summer, Teklinski said the company realized the colossal number was actually attainable and began making a group effort to reach it, she said.
While certainly a feather in Prudential’s cap, the $1 billion number also is a sign the market is changing for the better, Fase added.
“This really shows that our markets are truly turning around …” he said. “This has been a monumental year. Celebrating our 60th year as a family-owned company, and then to have our agents reach $1 billion in sales — I couldn’t be more proud of their hard work.”