A Louisville native who left the corporate world for the commercial real estate industry six years ago now has started his own local firm.
And he believes his new endeavor will bring a little twist to a competitive market.
Tyler Chesser formally launched The Chesser Companies last week. It's a full-service commercial real estate firm that specializes in real estate brokerage and investment sales as well as professional development — including individualized coaching and mentoring services — for real estate investors.
Chesser said he could see the professional development part of the business appealing to real estate investors who are starting out, but he sees it applying to anyone who wants to take their business to the next level.
He described the company as a one-stop shop for clients to not only build out their real estate portfolio but also to build long-term partnerships.
On the real estate side, The Chesser Companies manages the marketing, sale and acquisition of commercial properties across multiple industry sectors, including multifamily, retail, office and light industrial deals in Kentucky and Indiana.
Chesser noted that many firms handle real estate deals and investment sales opportunities of all shapes and sizes, but his focus on professional development and training in the real estate realm is relatively new to the market. And it's something he's passionate about it, noting that professional growth is vital to avoid stagnation.
He said he is building a professional development program that will include formal agreements with seasoned real estate veterans who will serve as mentors.
Chesser has learned the business through trial and error. He previously spent time in international and digital marketing as well as direct sales for several major companies, including Texas Roadhouse Inc. and General Electric Co., so he had no background in commercial real estate when he entered the business as an agent half-a-dozen years ago.
He said he often felt like an outsider because he had no family members or mentors with experience in commercial real estate to turn to for advice or networking opportunities.
"It was really an uphill battle and a struggle to get my footing," he said.
But he did find his way, spending the past two years with Louisville-based Gant Hill & Associates LLC. He was the firm's vice president of commercial real estate investments until he left that position last week to launch this company. He was also honored as a member of Louisville Business First's 20 People to Know in Real Estate last year.
Chesser has started small, saying the firm will operate with him as principal and two staff members. The firm is close to moving into a small office on Chenoweth Lane in Saint Matthews. He declined to disclose the location or its size because the lease has not been finalized. Chesser also declined to discuss his startup costs for the venture but said he is personally funding the operation.
Chesser said he has enjoyed working with Gant Hill and his team and that he plans to keep those connections intact through his new venture. His goal is to build collaborations with other firms on deals and professional opportunities.
"You have to have those deep, strong relationships," he said, "and you have to keep those relationships to succeed."