Broker Spotlight – Zach Middleton


June 23rd, 2020

Rugby is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world. It requires brawn, speed and tremendous conditioning. Life as a commercial real estate agent is equally demanding—maybe not in terms of physical fitness—but certainly when it comes to mental toughness. Long hours, stress and rejection are part of the gig; but so is trust, building relationships and successful outcomes—just like a winning rugby team. Perhaps it’s this correlation between the sport and the industry that drove Zach Middleton to The Klabin Company.

Zach came to the firm in 2016 after playing rugby at a high level. First at Florida State University where he played in matches all over the southeastern United States against other top-notch college teams. He also went to Spain to study abroad and play rugby, so when he graduated from Florida State in 2015, he was well-traveled and an experienced athlete. While he was uncertain at the time what his future may hold, he knew he wanted to return home to the South Bay (he was born in Torrance and raised in Palos Verdes). Intrigued by a career in real estate, Zach started taking classes in early 2016 to get his license. He was also fortunate enough to meet a gentleman who had a successful career in commercial real estate and was extremely helpful in sharing information and making introductions. A future in the business became evident, but before he could pursue it, Zach was presented with an opportunity too good to pass up: Move to New Zealand and play rugby for a club team.

Before he left for New Zealand, Zach made a deal with himself to finish his real estate classes while he was there. He followed through and when he returned after six months Down Under, he was ready to take the test, passed and obtained his license. It was the summer of 2016 when Zach got back to the South Bay. He took a job as a P.E. teacher at a camp for Sharefest, an organization dedicated to empowering youth and transforming communities by creating change in Los Angeles’ under-resourced neighborhoods. It was through Sharefest that Zach met Frank Schulz III, who not only served as the non-profit’s Chairman of the Board, but also as Managing Principal of The Klabin Company. Frank learned of Zach’s desire to get into commercial real estate, so they met for an interview and the rest is history. Zach was hired in the fall of 2016.

Today, Zach is part of a team with Max Farkas that focuses primarily on representing businesses and building owners in leases, subleases and industrial real estate sales transactions in the Mid Counties submarket. The team recently completed their largest transaction to date, representing a global logistics company in a long-term lease for 122,000 square feet of industrial space valued at almost $8 million. Zach sees the transaction as a turning point in his career.

“This was a transaction that took several years to finalize,” said Zach. “It taught us to understand the importance of relationships in the business. This was the first company whose door Max and I knocked on, so to go through a long process, experience ups and downs and to ultimately get it done was impactful. We were patient, and the client was equally patient. We learned how to keep the client informed which was priceless to the execution, and something we will carry with us moving forward.”

Zach is proud to be a part of the team at The Klabin Company, one that is dedicated to an environment of openness, communication, sharing resources and helping each other. He credits his veteran colleagues with instilling the values needed to be successful.

“We have great teachers here at Klabin,” said Zach. “The philosophy is that nothing we do in this business happens overnight. You need to have a career mindset and from that great things can happen.”

Great things are happening for Zach. Contact him directly to see how he can make great things happen for you at ZachM@Klabin.com and learn more about him on his profile page.