BROCK A. ROGERSON, DMS, FMA, CIM® & Co-Founder and Director of R2 Capital Partners Inc.
“Realizing the benefits in capitalizing on profitable real estate investment opportunities.”
Brock A. Rogerson, DMS, FMA, CIM and Co-Founder and Director of R2 Capital Partners Inc., has a vision for the future of investing. It’s a strategy that opens up opportunity and financial security for both high net worth and average investors. His solution? Using long-term real estate investment to stabilize portfolios and generate ongoing income for investors. “It’s not good enough to have a good investment strategy that makes money in a good market for a period of time,” says Brock. “You need to be able to move through the good and the bad, have good financial planning, diversify your asset allocation and balance all these driving principles.”
It’s a strategy Brock’s been developing and practicing himself since 2009 with a decade of financial planning and investing experience under his belt prior to that. His extensive experience in helping high-net-worth clients build their wealth and prepare for retirement includes a foundation of understanding as a Certified Investment Manager (CIM), Financial Management Advisor (FMA), and was the 12th Canadian to earn his Derivatives Market Specialist (DMS) designation. On the real estate side, Brock’s been recognized by The Real Estate Investment Network (REIN) as the “Top Player of 2017” with the Leslie Cluff Memorial Award and has been nominated as “Investor of the Year” multiple times for Canadian Real Estate Wealth Magazine, winning “Inspirational Investor of the Year” in 2011.
Brock practices what he preaches when it comes to his real estate investing strategies in order to showcase the value to clients. Brock explains, “There’s too much focus on stocks and bonds in the financial industry today. I’m working to find solutions for clients that strengthen their portfolios and that includes real estate”. “Most Canadians are dramatically underserved and underexposed to real estate outside of their primary residence. Diversifying our asset allocation with more real estate exposure is working very well for us and I’d like to find ways to bring more people along to realize the benefits.”
After entering the business in 2000, Brock gained his initial experience as a floor trader at the Winnipeg Commodity Exchange and in various roles with CIBC before starting to build his real estate portfolio with his first purchase in 2009. His growing property collection currently includes 176 rental units across Red Deer, Alta., Winnipeg, Man., Mississauga and Chatham, Ont., Saint John, N.B., Tuscaloosa, AL, South Bend, IN, and Atlanta, GA. “All my experience and understanding in the equity markets and financial planning means I can more proficiently identify and capitalize on profitable real estate investment opportunities,” states Brock, adding that most of his properties are multi-family residential and short-term stay rentals with some commercial properties as well. “It’s all cashflow based on the here and now, not future speculation around projects or funding being approved. We’re looking at the immediate cashflow and investor returns starting day one.”
This innovative area of real estate investing is more team-oriented than any previous role Brock’s held. As a people person, that’s an aspect he appreciates. “There are so many more team players we’re relying on for expertise in each area from appraisers to environmental site assessors, lenders, lawyers, engineers, architects, property managers, land surveyors, insurance agents, accountants, and realtors, we really require a strong network to operate at this scale across the country,” says Brock. “The number of people involved in a transaction is extensive, not unlike all the behind the scenes work in portfolio management. We rely heavily on our team and network in every market we go into. Having their local knowledge and expertise is important.”
Once the real estate product is in place, Brock and his partners work to find the ideal match for each client’s needs and goals. “We are cognizant of each client’s financial plan and we discuss where this piece fits, what’s appropriate and ensure we have the right offering for each client.”
As R2 continues to grow smoothly, Brock’s career journey is filled with excitement and experience that’s deeply ingrained in who he is today. It’s story well worth stepping back into as the industry’s quickly evolved since the turn of the century.
Born and raised in Calgary, Brock’s entry into the professional world of finance began at CIBC as a Business Coordinator, or as he describes, “paper pushing.” A life changing event came while celebrating New Year’s Eve in Mexico to welcome 2001, Brock made an acquaintance from Winnipeg, soon after traveling there to visit. While there, he ventured down to the Winnipeg Commodity Exchange. “It was my dream growing up to be part of that action buying and selling stocks,” says Brock. “I ended up trading in canola, wheat, barley and field peas. It was indescribable, possibly the best job I’ll ever have.”
That initial visit opened up a chance meeting that changed Brock’s career trajectory and personal life for good. “I met Bobby ‘the Brain’ Fugle that day,” says Brock. “He saw me up in the viewing gallery and invited me down to the trading floor. I’ll never forget that feeling – the energy, the yelling and shouting, even some pushing and shoving, it was amazing! Bobby invited me for drinks afterwards at Bleachers, the dive bar behind the Commodity Exchange. There was a bit of everything VLTs, heavy smoke, scotch, suits, and even the occasional homeless person. All the traders were reliving and analyzing their day. It was so exciting; I knew I had to come back.”
So, Brock started working as a floor trader, trading his own funds. “I came onto that floor and got creamed the first six months,” says Brock with a laugh. “Everyone told me that was normal and it was part of the education. I lost money 12 days in a row. Statistically, if you flip a coin, losing 12 times in a row is obscene. I thought about it and I saw something encouraging. It meant there was a wrong way to do this work, therefore, there had to be right way to do it. It could not just be random. The next day when I went on the trading floor every time I thought I should buy, I sold, and vice-versa. I had to train my brain to learn some of the indicators which seem positive are already worked into the price. The saying is, ‘buy the rumor, sell the news.’ By the time the news is coming out, you should be getting out, not in.”
Two months later, Brock made money 13 days in a row. “I was careful, cautious, disciplined, nimble, I got in-and-out, and didn’t get greedy” he says. “I declared myself brilliant on that 13th day, figuring I had it made; I was the smartest person ever to trade. The 14th day, with my chest puffed out, I started trading large (by my standards with my own capital at 21 years old). The market started going against me. I was caught on the wrong side and I couldn’t get out quickly enough. By the time I did, I’d lost all the money I’d made the previous 13 days. Chalk it up to another lesson learned the hard way.”
It wasn’t a total loss because Brock’s relationship with Bobby continued to develop into one of incredible mentorship. “He took me under his wing, taught me about investing and about life during my influential early 20s. He is in his 60’s today and in my eyes he is still a giant, invincible, and so much larger than life,” says Brock. “In Winnipeg, the markets closed at 1:15 pm every day. After that, we’d all go for drinks in the winter to talk about the trading day, markets, and the trends. In summers, we’d head to Niakwa golf course. Bobby’s circle always welcomed me, but I knew I was punching above my weight class when it came to business success. To be surrounded by these people was fantastic.”
Unfortunately, this dream job was short lived as the exchange went electronic when Brock was 23. So, he returned to CIBC in Calgary for 16 years as an advisor, investment specialist and then a financial planning consultant. “I tended to work with individual and corporate clients who had come into new funds through a life event – such as an inheritance, selling a business, or selling a property. I would then create a holistic financial plan for them to reach their financial goals,” says Brock. “I was very fortunate to be in that role from a young age and over a significant period of time. I saw so many different clients, worked through various scenarios, and observed the ways people obtained, grew, and protected their money.”
While Brock was dedicated to engaging and supporting his clients to make informed financial decisions, he increasingly noticed people’s tendency to blur the line between good investing strategy and lucky speculation. “I saw so many ‘accidental millionaires’ during my earlier years,” states Brock. “Say a client had operated a gift shop in one of the National Parks and now, 30 years later, sold it with a profit of $3 million, clients would often attribute it to running a spectacular business. The truth was, they had made one decision to purchase the property, made their modest living with the business, and when they sold, it was the real estate that made the millions, not a brilliantly operated business. But nevertheless, they were millionaires.”
The reality of that confusion came to light for many as the economy crashed in 2008-2009. “I helped hold all my clients’ hands through that financial crisis, as well as a lot of the advisors,” says Brock. “For many, this was the first major sell-off event they’d been through. This is where I truly realized the difference in real estate investing where people are trained to purchase and hold their investment. I’m advocating for more people to have a larger portion of their assets held in real estate so they can protect themselves from market volatility and risk, while achieving more long-term success.”
In 2017, Brock left the bank to focus solely on real estate and his ability to create profitable strategies. For instance, he purchased a 24 unit building in Moose Jaw challenged with seven vacancies. Brock quickly converted all seven suites into short-term rentals to generate ongoing revenue. “Now, the building’s worth more, its fully rented and is producing better income than it would as solely a traditional rental property,” says Brock. “We use many different creative management strategies to add value and increase profits for our investors.”
Another tactic saw Brock and his partner Spencer Riche create a secondary business, Sure Home Stays, to drive secondary revenue into their buy and hold real estate investments. The short-term rental management company includes all the infrastructure to manage properties across different cities through advanced technology, including pricing, management, maintenance, guest screening, sound monitoring, multi-platform listings, cleaning services, and calendar management.
“Spencer has played a crucial role in taking R2’s real estate investing to the next level, and he is instrumental to its future as well,” says Brock. “He brings the tech expertise, working with machine learning and algorithms to find ideal properties, oversee implementation of various management techniques, and in addition he has construction background.”
Brock and Spencer are working, to prove their real estate track record and showcase the potential to others. “For us, and the industry, we want to respond to the client need for real estate exposure, with a package that’s understandable, produces income and meets the client’s goals,” explains Brock. “I want to take these same projects we complete with ultra-high net worth individuals and corporations and make them more accessible so people can invest in the range of $150,000 and up. I’m working to eventually create a product that enables exposure in these awesome investments to the average Canadian, bridging that gap so they can diversify their asset allocation and increase their total returns too.”
Natalie Noble’s love of writing stems from her passion for hearing and sharing people’s stories. Over the years she has written for various business, real estate, and agriculture publications. At the heart of her work is a desire to continuously learn and connect.
Brock A. Rogerson
Partner | R2 Capital Partners Inc.
310 - 977 - 5125