We Develop Opportunity.

Berkley is an independent, Atlanta-based real estate investment and advisory firm founded on the career and business philosophies of founder, Mike Cohn.





Sembler, Berkley Development Announce Groundbreaking and Anchor Tenants in North Macon

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – (September 4, 2018) – Joint venture partners, St. Petersburg, Fla.-based The Sembler Company and Atlanta, Ga.-based Berkley Development announce the groundbreaking of North Macon Plaza, a new retail development in the growing, northeastern sub-market of Macon-Bibb County, Georgia.

North Macon Plaza will feature 166,465 SF of retail, sitting well positioned at I-75 and Bass Road, a 5-8 minute drive from Downtown Macon.

The center, opening Fall 2019, will offer a number of new and returning retailers to the Macon-Bibb County market, including: Marshall’s/Homegoods, Michaels, Beall’s Outlet, Old Navy, Five Below, Famous Footwear and Lifeway Christian. The plaza will also be adjacent to Bass Pro Shops’, a 600,000 SF Sportmans Warehouse retail facility and distribution center and the Shoppes at River Crossing, a 750,000 sf lifestyle center. 

“We’ve been actively pursuing this deal for quite some time,” said Michael Cohn, founder of Berkley Development. “The demographics, regional location and proximity to the residential growth, make this development highly desirable.”

Sembler CEO Ron Wheeler commented, “North Macon Plaza meets all of our investment criteria - great market, well located, long-term appreciation potential and most importantly a great joint venture partner. We’re looking forward to seeing this project come to life and hope it’s the first of many with Berkley Development.”

Cohn also mentioned that there is opportunity for a North Macon Plaza Phase II that could accommodate up to 50,000 square feet, noting the growth of new companies in the area that can help create market opportunities.

The North Macon Plaza property was purchased from Fickling and Company whose long-term vision for Bass Road continues to materialize.

About Sembler:

The Sembler Company is celebrating more than 50 years of creating retail real estate value. Sembler provides a full array of retail real estate services, including development and redevelopment, acquisition, property and asset management, leasing and other related services throughout the Southeastern United States and Puerto Rico. Sembler has developed more than 325 projects totaling 27 million square feet and currently leases and manages nearly 10 million square feet. For more information, please visit www.sembler.com.

About Berkley Development:

Founded in 2016, Berkley Development is an investment and advisory firm specializing in the capitalization and development/redevelopment of commercial and mixed-use projects throughout the Sun Belt. For more information, please visit  www.berkleydevelopment.us.


Grounded in our personalized partnership approach, ready expertise, and steady financials (anchored by a robust joint venture relationship), we strategically develop and redevelop commercial and mixed-used projects within the Sunbelt.

Investing in property is really about investing in peoplepartners, providers, communities, cities. It’s about building relationships, balancing perspectives and changing horizons.

That’s why we provide you with the personal attention of a trusted advisor, the agility and entrepreneurial energy of an independent business, and the solid financial foundation of an industry leader. It’s a model that lets us fully invest ourselves in what we do and who we serve, while allowing us the freedom to flex our creative muscles.


Mike Cohn
President and Founder

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Mike Cohn Headshot

The founder of Berkley Development (which he named after his daughter in 2016), Mike Cohn personally works on every project we undertake. He’s a hands-on, heads-up leader whose characteristically “active sense of calm” has become a hallmark of how we do business—high-energy, high-capacity, high-confidence, but never high-strung or high-pressure.

A co-founder of Lennar Commercial (a Miami, FL-based subsidiary of Lennar Corporation, which sold to a private equity firm in 2015), former Executive VP at Cousins Properties in Atlanta, and Senior Managing Director at Faison & Associates, Mike’s career has spanned more than 15 million square feet of projects—including nationwide platforms of retail, office and mixed-use properties stretching from California to Florida and Maine, and valued well in excess of $2B.

He holds a BBA with high distinction in Accounting and Finance from Emory University as well as a Juris Doctor degree with honors from the University of Florida College of Law.

When he’s not collaborating with our partners, he serves as a member of several non-profit boards—including the University of Florida Real Estate Advisory Board, ULI Commercial and Retail Development Product Council (Gold), and the ICSC and GA Bar members. He’s also a regular guest lecturer at the Goizuetta School of Business (Emory), the Warrington College of Business (University of Florida) and the Kenan-Flagler School of Business (University of North Carolina).

Not surprisingly, he’s also a big fan of college sports. 


Get to Know Mike

Q: What the best piece of investment advice you've been given?

A: “Expend your emotional capital on the things that really matter, not your financial investments. Don't lose your objectivity.”

Q: What is your favorite structure in the world?

A: “The Golden Gate Bridge—the ultimate example of where great form and function intersect with ‘location, location, location.’ It’s a timeless beauty that never takes a bad photo."

Q: What is your greatest professional habit? And what's a not-so-great one?

A: “I’d say my greatest is treating everyone equally, from the cleaning crew to the CEO. Not-so-great? Procrastination. (Like the length of time it took me to answer this question.)"

Q: How do we keep brick-and-mortar retail relevant in an ever more digital and technology-driven world? 

A“Ah, the ultimate question… Technology evolves in real time, and brick-and-mortar evolves in decades. Bringing them together in ways that solve for and anticipate stakeholders’ and communities’ demands will require the traditional landlord-tenant paradigm to shift into a much more collaborative relationship. We’ll all have to work more closely and mutually together to continue to push real estate forward into the future—not only quickly, but wisely and with agility.”

Q: What do you consider your biggest professional achievement?

A: “When I chose to stop practicing law, I told a recruiter that I never wanted to write another resume. And I haven’t.”