November 13, 2019

Helping the Aerospace Industry Take Off in Ann Arbor


Six hundred miles away in metro-Washington, DC, R2 Space, Inc. needed a Michigan broker to find the company a new corporate headquarters in Ann Arbor. The word through their trusted network was, “Contact the Thomas Duke Company.”

Michelle Grobler and the Washtenaw County team listened to closely to the aerospace company’s specifications: 4-5,000 square feet of office space near the University of Michigan’s engineering talent and culture of innovation. From Michelle’s list of suitable and available properties, R2’s founders identified several—and asked to see them all in one afternoon.

Four days later when they flew in, Michelle had lined up back-to-back appointments with the property owners and listing brokers. Before the meetings, she coached her R2 clients on ways to talk about their space-based satellite assembly company that would dispel misunderstanding and attract Ann Arbor building owners to offering it a home.

At the end of that full afternoon, the principals of R2 had fallen in love with one of the spaces Michelle showed them and signed a seven-year lease.
R2’s new corporate headquarters brings 30 new jobs, a $1.4 million capital investment in Ann Arbor, and a goal to “showcase how the Motor City will soon drive the space industry.”

The only ones happier than the R2 corporate team are Michelle Grobler and her team. “It’s so rewarding to see clients excited about a space where they can envision their business thriving,” she said, “and to see how the community will benefit.”

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