DLR Group acquires KKE Architects

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DLR Group and KKE Architects strengthen design offerings in key markets, add new sector expertise, and extend geographic reach in U.S. and China

Joining DLR Group we build upon KKE’s legacy to create one of the leading design firms in the nation

DLR Group and KKE Architects announced today that DLR Group has acquired Minneapolis based design firm KKE Architects. In Minneapolis, the offices of DLR Group and KKE will merge to operate as DLR Group KKE from DLR Group’s downtown office location. KKE offices in Las Vegas; Tucson; and Pasadena and Irvine, Calif., will operate as DLR Group KKE in those markets. A KKE location in Phoenix will merge into DLR Group’s Phoenix office.

The merger of KKE into DLR Group enhances the competitive position for both firms in existing markets while expandng their geographic reach. DLR Group and KKE’s combined design excellence in the areas of hospitality, retail, and workplace forms one of the leading design firms in the hospitality industry. KKE’s award winning K-12, Higher Education, and Justice sectors also strengthens DLR Group’s nationally recognized Education and Criminal Justice design which are core practice areas of the firm.

“Adding KKE is a significant step towards growing DLR Group by extending our geographic reach, elevating our design expertise and strengthening our position in our current market sectors,” said DLR Group Managing Principal Griff Davenport, AIA. “KKE’s leadership adds diversity and a depth of design excellence to benefit each of the clients that our 500 DLR Group employee-owners serve every day from 22 offices across the country, and now in China.”

KKE adds to DLR Group’s sector expertise with extensive commercial development, gaming, healthcare, multi-family housing and senior housing experience, along with a thriving Native American practice. KKE also expands DLR Group’s presence in mainland China, substantially increasing DLR’s design services internationally.

The merger adds additional design resources to established client bases in Arizona and Minnesota. The merger compliments DLR Group with an expanded presence in Southern California, building upon the DLR Group acquisition of WWCOT in February 2010. KKE’s experience in healthcare and senior housing, combined with DLR Group WWCOT’s resume in those same areas, provides a foundation for exponential growth in those sectors.

“Joining DLR Group we build upon KKE’s legacy to create one of the leading design firms in the nation,” said KKE Architects CEO Greg Hollenkamp, AIA. “This strategic move gives clients the benefit of a broader geographic presence and expanded market depth. This provides KKE access to integrated design services including engineering, and positions us and our clients to maximize our mutual success in the new economy.”

With the merger, KKE can now offer existing clients additional expertise including Sports design and complete electrical, mechanical, and structural engineering services. The merger also provides KKE the opportunity to apply its design talent and expertise to meet the unique needs of existing KKE and DLR Group clients domestically and internationally.

KKE CEO Hollenkamp, and President Tom Gerster, AIA, will become DLR Group Senior Principals. Hollenkamp will lead the combined firms’ growth strategies in the Federal, Healthcare, Native American, and Senior Housing markets and the firm’s China pursuits. Gerster will become the regional leader for DLR Group’s operations in the Upper Midwest including Illinois and Minnesota, and work closely with DLR Group leadership to integrate KKE operations into the firm.

Significant KKE projects include The Mall of America, University of Minnesota McNamara Alumni Center, Molasky Corporate Center in Las Vegas, and The Shanghai Shimao New Experience a two million square foot mixed-use retail, entertainment, and housing development planned in the Songjiang District of China. KKE generated more than $32 million in revenue in 2009.

Click here for more information about the KKE merger with DLR Group, leadership profiles, and office location information.

About DLR Group
Elevate the human experience through design. A lofty promise, but one each DLR Group employee-owner commits to at the beginning of every day. This promise inspires sustainable design for public and private clients in the Corporate, Higher Education+Sports, Justice, and K-12 Education sectors. DLR Group is an integrated design firm providing architecture, engineering, planning, and interior design from 22 locations across the country and in Shanghai. Visit http://www.dlrgroup.com or call 1-877-DLR Group.    

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Andy Ernsting
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