Published: May 8, 2017

Leeds winning real estate team takes photo with trophyLeeds reclaimed the top spot in this year’s National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) Rocky Mountain Challenge real estate competition. The winning team was composed of four Leeds’ MS real estate students, two MBA students, and one master of urban and regional planning student. The team, called BRAND Partners, received $7,500 for their Coalesce development project proposal. Team members included Chris Antonov, Daniel Nichols, Juan Niño, Connor Richardson, James Roy II, Katie Bloudoff-Indelicato and Joseph Donadio.

The Rocky Mountain Challenge pits the top business schools in Colorado against each other in a semester-long, real-world real estate development case competition. For this year’s competition, Leeds competed against the University of Denver Daniels School of Business. In the 15-year history of the competition, the Leeds’ University of Colorado Real Estate Center has won the title six times. 

“Our students have been working tirelessly for the past semester and we are so proud of what they were able to achieve,” said Mike Kercheval, Executive Director of the Leeds’ CU Real Estate Center. “This is a testament to the work of our students and faculty to bring best-in-class professional opportunities and ensure they have practical experience by the time they become professionals in the community,” remarked Kercheval

The competition focused on the Globeville Neighborhood Plan as part of the North Denver Cornerstone Collaborative established by Mayor Michael Hancock. Students collaborated to share their unique redevelopment ideas for a 20-acre parcel in the historic Globeville neighborhood of Denver. The Leeds team’s proposed development plan featured a mixed-use development project named Coalesce that was community-driven, inclusive, and dynamic. The project was noted for its forward-thinking as a place for people and the community that would serve the Globeville neighborhood well.

This year’s championship team was instructed by Kim Koehn, a principal of K2 Ventures, with assistance from business community volunteers with backgrounds in real estate development, architecture, and environmental and financing specialties. As part of the semester-long process, each university fields three teams of graduate students who go through the case competition. At the end of the semester, each university selects the top team to compete in front of nearly 800 real estate leaders at NAIOP’s gala event.

This year’s project was sponsored by JRL 51st Street LLC, a joint venture between real estate entrepreneurs Joe Henry, Ryan Oliver, and Loren Snyder.

To learn more about the work at the real estate center visit