Beyond Business: SIGives Mission to Make a Difference

When we say SIG is a values-driven business, this really comes to life with SIGives, our charitable giving arm. Through donating a combination of our time, energy, and treasures, we acknowledge that beyond the commercial real estate bubble, there are bigger things that require our attention, and that with knowledge comes responsibility.

This idea that SIG is bigger than any individual, and should have a positive impact in the world, but most significantly, within the communities where we work, predates the founding of the company. Back in 2010, when Chris and Liz Sands started SIG in Santa Monica, CA, they infused their own values associated with giving and service into the company’s DNA. They recognized that real estate brokerage can often be very self-focused, overly individualistic, and cut-throat, core traits that they wanted to avoid and why they wanted to do things differently with SIG. This alternative way of looking at the world and doing business has taken hold at SIG and has become such a fundamental pillar in our success, that the quarterly community outreach projects are no longer mandated but rather motivated and self-propelled by each of our current seven offices.  

“SIGives is absolutely the epitome of our culture and values, particularly collaboration, gratitude, and giving back. On more than one occasion, I’ve heard from candidates and new hires that the SIG culture and SIGives sets us apart and is a key reason why people want to work for us,” says Liz Sands, SIG co-founder.

SIGives Today

While we donate our time as part of SIGives, we also know that many of the organizations that we work with need more than just volunteers which is why we give a percentage of our revenue to organizations that are working to improve the communities in which we operate. In 2022, we proudly hit the milestone of $1 million donated in a year. 

When it comes to giving our time, each office location comes together quarterly for a day of giving back where we spend time volunteering with the causes closest to our hearts in our local communities. Recent examples are a local animal shelter in Austin TX and a beach clean up in Charleston, SC.  

Finally, it’s important to us that SIGives extends to our own team members. When someone has a cause that is near and dear to them, they just need to ask and we contribute to any charitable initiative that our team member is involved with in their personal capacities. 

SIGives in 2024

Our recent SIGives office activities included:

  • Cleared invasive plant species from several acres of Valley Forge National Park – Philadelphia, PA
  • Beach clean up on Sullivan’s Island – Charleston, SC 
  • South Florida Broadcaster’s Celebrity Golf tournament in association with the My Family Matters foundation – Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Volunteered at Central Texas Food Bank – Austin, TX

Events we are involved in this year: 

  • We’re a headline sponsor of the Special Olympics Bocce Bash – Charleston, SC 
  • Habitat For Humanity – Austin, TX
  • CHOP event, Philadelphia, PA

Habitat for Humanity and the Special Olympics 

Long-standing beneficiaries of SIGives are Habitat for Humanity and the Special Olympics. Working in real estate, our support for Habitat for Humanity is apt. At ribbon-cutting ceremonies for newly built Habitat homes, we have met the new residents of homes we have helped build, which gives us our team a humble reminder of what real estate is really about and continues to fuel our passion for what we do. 

With Chris and Liz’s backgrounds as competitive athletes, the Special Olympics holds a special place in our hearts  – we believe that everyone should have access to the benefits and enjoyment that sports and competing gives you. Our teams have volunteered at games and we’ve sponsored events that have resulted in hundreds of athletes being able to compete at the Special Olympics.

“Donations from companies like Sands Investment Group are the lifeblood of Special Olympics South Carolina. Their loyal support over so many years has made our mission possible, and while they may not know you by name, our athletes carry thanks in their hearts for your contributions.”   

  • Sandye Williams, Director of Development, Special Olympics South Carolina

Our Future Plans for SIGives

Looking ahead, we intend to grow and expand SIGives leaning into our CRE capabilities as strategic advisors and deal makers, all the while maintaining the program’s organic, grassroots ethos, where everyone at SIG feels ownership and has the ability to shape our charitable activities. We are honored to work with the organizations we do and proud of how SIGives continues to bring to life our culture, our values-based approach to CRE brokerage, and the SIGnificant difference you experience when choosing SIG.


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The SIG Difference

At SIG, we’ve always done things differently and put our values at the heart of everything we do. And, coming out of a tough 2023 and still achieving above-average growth, we know this difference is what creates success for us. Our core values – honesty, integrity, gratitude, giving back, and growth – have allowed us to grow a measurably excellent CRE brokerage service and a best-in-class company. 

Our Values

Our values mean that we are not a group of real estate brokers who look at each deal through a single-minded transactional lens. Instead, we are strategic advisors who build long-lasting partnerships with our clients. These partnerships are based on honesty and integrity – ensuring the best deals are done, with the best outcome for all involved, while still maintaining a premium quality of service.

Our values also mean that we cooperate and collaborate, internally and externally, to add value and drive growth. This drives better deals for our clients, giving them access to wider databases, more choices, and better outcomes. 

Make no mistake though, our brokers are also fiercely competitive. But uniquely, they work hard and compete in an environment where they can show up and be seen as their whole selves and grow as human beings while also being an integral part of growing our business. 

SIGives – Giving Back

One of our core beliefs for the past 14 years is that SIG is bigger than us, and that with success comes responsibility. This is reflected in our values of gratitude and giving back, and in the work we do to contribute to the wider community outside of the real estate bubble through SIGives.

SIGives is a program that donates a percentage of our revenue to organizations that work to improve the lives of others. This means that when you work with us, you’re doing more than just contributing towards our bottom line.

We also donate our time and effort. Every quarter, our team members in each of our offices go out into the community to get involved with causes making a difference. Some of the community projects we support include Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics and our local pet shelters.

Why the SIG Difference Matters to You

For real estate investors, wherever you land on the investment spectrum, the SIG difference means we can offer you a full suite of CRE services across industrial, office, medical, multi-family, and shopping centers. We partner with you to understand your investment goals and work across our network to find the right deal for you, with a premium quality service level that delivers results.

Check out our recent listings here

For tenants, our ability to support your business expansion goals extends beyond our net lease specialization to full brokerage services. The quality of service and values-based relationships you already know us for will continue to strengthen this year.

Our team, and CRE professionals who want to work or collaborate with us, can be at the top of their CRE game while cultivating their very best selves, having a voice, and succeeding and growing while staying in alignment with their core values. 

On the topic of our team, we’re growing our office footprint in 2024, so check out our careers page to join SIG. 

So, Why Do We Think This Values-Based Approach to CRE Brokerage Will Work?

Because it already has. We have proven the model over the last 14 years with growth that we are very proud of. Last year we listed and sold almost $4 billion, comprising more than 700  properties – and we plan to continue the growth trajectory in 2024. We have achieved significant traction as we build on our net lease foundation to expand our portfolio of brokerage services: we reached $300 million in industrial deals and $250 million in shopping centers in 2023. We achieved this growth with a small, agile team, and an industry-leading real estate marketing platform. 

But don’t just take our word for it. Inc. Magazine has ranked us in their list of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in the US for four years in a row.

Many in the industry might be facing 2024 with trepidation, given the rough ride we had last year. But we are confident that our values-based approach to commercial real estate and our laser-sharp focus on providing the best quality of service, underpinned by our people and platform, will maintain our growth trajectory this year.