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RISMEDIA, August 13, 2008-Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., a Prudential Financial, Inc. company, announced the affiliation of Starck Realtors®, one of suburban Chicago’s oldest and largest independent real estate brokerages.

According to the company, Starck Realtors, which will operate as Prudential Starck Realtors®, is a full-service real estate company with 13 offices and 500 sales professionals and employees. It serves Boone, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, Northern Will and Winnebago counties.

“Part of our strategic plan is to double the size of our company in two years,” said Andy Starck, owner and chief executive officer. “Among our first steps is to affiliate with a major brand to further increase the stature and reach of our organization. We chose Prudential Real Estate for its global brand strength, its breadth of product and service offerings and its core values, which are so closely aligned with our own.”

In addition, three Prudential Real Estate affiliates in the area have agreed in principle to join the Starck Realtors family including Prudential Crosby Realtors of Rockford, which will operate as Prudential Crosby Starck Realtors®; Prudential Great American Real Estate (Lake Zurich); and Prudential Properties Northwest (Arlington Heights and Palatine). This will bring to the company over 100 sales professionals and even more expertise and market coverage.

Starck said his company, founded in 1960 by his parents Robert and Mary Jane Starck, is known for its innovation and use of technology to better serve clients. The new affiliation will bring powerful systems, tools and Web alliances to Starck Realtors’ sales professionals.

“Prudential Real Estate sets the industry standard for real estate technology and we plan to leverage all of its resources,” Starck said. “Our sales professionals will take their business and service to new levels using Prudential Real Estate’s exclusive Online AdvantageSM sales platform, and our listings will gain significantly more exposure through Prudential’s robust Internet marketing programs.”

Laurie Keenan, president of Prudential Real Estate, welcomed Starck Realtors to the affiliate network. “We’re thrilled, as we’ve wanted Starck Realtors to be a part of our family for many years,” she said. “The company is extremely well run and thrives on a foundation of experience and service with integrity. The combination of a strong local company aligned with a famous international brand will be difficult to beat in suburban Chicago.”

Besides residential and commercial real estate, Starck Realtors offers bank-owned property and relocation, mortgage and home-warranty services, among others. “Our customers certainly know about Starck Realtors, yet we’re probably one of suburban Chicago’s best-kept secrets,” said Tom Stengren, Starck Realtors senior vice president. “The branding and image Prudential Real Estate brings to our company will make us much more competitive. This is really a proud and exciting time for our company.”

Will Luther, chief operating officer, said Starck Realtors sees immediate and long-term growth opportunity. “We’re expanding when others in our industry are pulling back,” Luther explained. “Our clients need us more than ever in this challenging real estate market, and we’re there for them with more tools and resources than ever before. Of course, we’re positioning our company for long-term growth as the Chicago real estate market finds balance and turns upward.”

Added Keenan, who lives in the Chicago area, “With Starck Realtors, we now have as strong a presence in suburban Chicago as we do in metropolitan Chicago. You’re going to see The Rock® yard signs everywhere throughout Chicagoland.”

Starck foresees a smooth transition for his company as a Prudential Real Estate affiliate. “Our management team has looked at this affiliation from all angles over many months, and sees this as a wonderful fit that benefits our sales associates, employees and customers alike,” he explained. “The only challenge I see is in my own personal wardrobe: I’ve got to replace all of my old, red neckties with Prudential blue ones.”

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