First National Financial LP

Borrower Perspectives Revisited: Danny Iannuzziello

  • First National Financial LP

In 1989, Danny Iannuzziello started Skyview Realty Ltd., a full-service brokerage firm specializing in the sale of multi-residential properties. In the 30+ years since founding Skyview, Danny, President, and his team have shepherded the company into a leadership position in Ontario’s multi-residential real estate market. During the past three decades, Danny also diversified the real estate brokerage business by acquiring and repositioning properties, in addition to brokering sales for clients. Faithful to the values of trust, integrity and professionalism, Danny and his team are committed service providers, offering full spectrum expertise from internal professionals and a network of partners. Regardless of the client or deal, they have a priority focus – helping clients sell their properties at the right price, as quickly as possible, with minimal issues.

We first spoke with Danny in 2018 about his strategy of venturing outward, the importance of operational efficiency and First National’s proactive and supportive approach. Two years later, Danny shares insights about his three strategic priorities, how First National is moving him forward in his strategic vision and what he feels has contributed to an optimized relationship between the two companies.

Q: What has changed most in your industry and business since we last spoke in 2018?
DI: We are going after opportunities in three key areas. Several years ago, we commissioned a study to discover how to improve the efficiencies of electrically heated buildings. Since then, we have acquired four buildings with electric heating systems, and have been able to improve their efficiencies dramatically. We are also seeing opportunities in tertiary markets, especially in areas including Niagara Falls, Orangeville and Brockville. There has been a spike in migration from primary markets to those smaller markets for a variety of reasons. We are also making significant investments in IT so we can streamline and organize data more effectively. Analytics are becoming a vital part of our business – and not just to maximize utilities and other operational elements. We wanted to extend analytics to profiling the Ideal Tenant and measuring internal performance contributions toward overall efficiency.

Q: What are your business goals and what types of opportunities are you pursuing?
DI: There are a lot of opportunities on the management side to increase revenue by maximizing the potential of a building. On the brokerage side, we are looking to expand that business by leveraging our investments in IT, data and metrics and by tapping our strategic alliances. First National is one of those alliances. We sold a few of its power of sale buildings and now we get referrals for clients looking to sell portfolios.

For example, there was a deal we were working on half way through 2019. After the bid process, a buyer from out of country offered a higher price. We hadn’t done business with someone from that country before, so we included a clause in the purchase of sale that the buyer had to work with Dru and First National. That deal came together as a result of our trust in Dru and the strategic alliance that we have with First National.

Q: How is First National supporting you in your goals beyond financing?
DI: The podcast discussions relating to different industry topics are really valuable. I also appreciate the periodic portfolio analysis, which uncovers opportunities to maximize our financing. Service levels are incredible, and as a result, First National handles all of our brokerage deals. We have an optimized relationship with Dru and his team. There is mutual respect and trust, and the energy and efficiency that we create together allows us to do more deals. Our teams are both detail oriented and analytically inclined, and we think similarly on what it takes to give clients ultimate service levels. As a result, when Dru needs brokerage representation, he comes to us. We send our clients directly there. There is a deep trust and confidence that each company can handle the details to similar standards of excellence.

Q: What do you value most about your relationship with Dru?
DI: My relationship with Dru goes beyond business. During the many years that we have worked together, we have become close friends. Our families socialize together on a regular basis. Dru is very much in tune with what I’m doing from both the ownership and brokerage perspectives. He searches for solutions for me and consults with me on deals, even if they don’t involve First National. I consider Dru a vital part of my team who helps to move me forward to my strategic vision.

Q: What do you believe motivates First National within your relationship?
DI: First National is client driven first and foremost. Of course, everyone wants to be successful in business, but First National is successful by focusing on relationships, the journey and everything else you develop by working with people you trust. When I get together with Dru, we don’t talk about the deals we’ve done. We talk about the fun we’ve had and how we overcame issues together. I’ve gotten to a point in my life and career where the journey matters. Dru and I have had a great journey together – growing our businesses and mentoring the next generation. The journey is what fuels my passion for coming into work and my love for what I’m doing. Dru and I are the same that way.