Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame: Dominion Real Estate Advisors’ Eric Banks

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Eric Banks
Group President, Executive Managing Broker
Dominion Real Estate Advisors
Bingham Farms, Michigan

Eric Banks, group president and principal at Bingham Farms, Michigan-based Dominion Real Estate Advisors, is a leader in the Detroit-area commercial real estate business.

As the executive managing broker  with Dominion, Banks oversees a team of affiliated professional brokers. . He  also serves as senior vice president of business development for the company’s integrated development arm Burton Katzman, a prominent third-generation real estate brand that presently manages more than 8 million square feet of commercial real estate and completes many significant investment transactions each year while also engaging in ground-up development.

In addition to his executive responsibilities, Banks remains heavily involved in transactional client services. Some of his recent noteworthy transactions include:

  • The 2022 sale of a 67-acre campus and 138,000-square-foot facility on behalf of Western Michigan University – Thomas M. Cooley Law School to FANUC Robotics N.A. This transaction allowed for the expansion of the  robotics manufactures Auburn Hills, Michigan, campus and the construction of a new 800,000-square-foot production facility.
  • The expansion of the United Wholesale Mortgage business campus to more than 2 million square feet in the fourth quarter of 2020. This transaction involved the purchase and sale of 867 South Blvd E., a 378,399-square-foot facility on 33 acres, and the land assemblage of multiple adjacent parcels.
  • The sale of the Summit Place Mall, a 1.1-million-square-foot shopping mall on 75 acres on behalf of Los Angeles-based lender SD Capital to a local developer in 2018.
  • The multi-year strategic repositioning and sale of a broken office project, 340 N. Main St. in Plymouth, Michigan, a 33,000-square-foot property. Banks acted as the Court Appointed Receiver, stabilized the property and later sold the asset on behalf of the lender in 2022.

“I am truly grateful that the progression of my career has allowed me to serve in a variety of interesting roles and capacities and allowed me to become involved in many different aspects of the CRE business,” Banks said. “There is so much variety within CRE. You can take the business in a lot of different directions and the business will push you to grow and evolve. Because I aspire to be a lifelong learner, I like that.”

In 2023, as part of the sponsorship group, Banks worked on  a $240 million joint venture and recapitalization of 24 infill industrial properties located throughout Southeast Michigan between BK/Dominion and an NYC private equity and real estate investment management firm. Much of this industrial portfolio had been assembled over the last 10 years within a “strategic acquisition initiative” that smartly anticipated current industrial real estate demand.

“Leadership can be much more of a personal growth journey than you think it’s going to be at first,” Banks said. “If you’re going to try and do it right, it will involve getting to know your own strengths, weaknesses and blind spots. It can be complicated. This internal reflection and personal examination can be challenging work but can also lead to enormous personal growth.”

Considering that these are just a taste of Banks’ successful transactions, it’s little surprise that this industry veteran has also notched several industry honors during his career. This includes multiple  Power Broker awards both individual and company related from CoStar Group and the 2020 Commercial Real Estate Transaction Award from the Michigan CCIM chapter.

When not working, Banks says that he enjoys spending time with his family, traveling and discovering new restaurants. He’s a fan of the outdoors and can frequently be found taking hiking and camping trips in the mountains with his son. He also enjoys visiting his daughter in New York City, and exploring all that this city has to offer.

“At some point I recognized that success in this business is not a straight line,” Banks said. “It can be a bit of a roller coaster ride. What is important is consistency and staying focused over the long haul.”