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Simon Embraces Technology, Sees Growth

Joshua SimonBy Rebekah Morris for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Josh Simon embraces technology and pushes those around him to be open and adaptable to new ways of getting things done as well. In that respect, he’s a bit more like a tech company CEO than a CRE development firm CEO.

Five years ago, near the bottom of the cycle, he struck out on his own, starting Simon CRE, understanding that there was nowhere to go but up. Since that time, he’s found his niche in developing or redeveloping spaces for “basic goods” type retailers. Prior to founding SimonCRE, Simon spent more than six years as an independent contractor for a national development company in the capacity of a Developer and Senior Leasing Associate.

While online sales are a pressure any retail developer has to accept, Simon has thrived by looking at tertiary markets and focusing on basic needs.

Some of his biggest clients include EZ Corp, Pet Club, Tractor Supply, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Verizon, and Dollar General. He focuses on markets where same-day service from the likes of Amazon aren’t available. Now with over 2MSF of space under management, and over $100M in his development pipeline, the strategy is clearly working.

Innovation in an Industry Averse to Change

Industries like real estate development and construction are not typically in the “early adopter” category for new technology. Simon CRE is, however.

From implementing programs and applications, such as Google Earth and Yardi, to being proactive with project management tools and implementing corporate-wide initiatives to communicate more efficiently, Simon says being innovative and open to new ways of doing things has given him an edge.

Explosive Growth in the Past Year

Simon CRE’s road to success is a journey, like many other start-ups. His story is great because he started with nothing, at the very bottom of the economic cycle, opening his doors in August 2010. Being fearless and confident in his work enabled him to build a clientele that trusted him. His integrity and ideal for “doing what you say you’re going to do” has earned him a solid reputation.

The first four years in business was really where he earned his chops. His persistence and patience have been rewarded in the past year with explosive growth. Going from three employees to fifteen and expanding to cover projects nationwide has brought in great success, along with a new set of issues.

Simon faces challenges that come along with a recent period of rapid growth. New staff members need time to come together into a cohesive team. His hiring has been careful, always searching for people who fit into the culture of innovation and open-mindedness. He’s selected and built a team that already possesses tremendous CRE experience which enables him to select and implement the best ideas brought forward by their wealth of knowledge.

Simon has always been a very active entrepreneur.  He founded a hosted VoIP company in 2010, which specialized in business communications called One Stop Voice.  After almost four years of growth, Simon sold it to a publicly traded company to focus on the tremendous growth SimonCRE was experiencing.

Working with Simon CRE

Simon hires architects, engineers, and GC’s to complete projects across the nation. Qualities they look for in potential consultants and contractors include: innovative, problem-solvers, and competitive in pricing. They must be open to adapting to new technology, and have experience with retail development.

Those interested in working on future Simon CRE projects, should contact Kassandra Bruhn: kassandra.bruhn@simoncre.com or 480-745-1956.

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