CB Richard Ellis has recruited Mike Walker from rival Colliers International as senior director and head of the Manchester industrial agency team.
Speculation had been mounting over how CBRE would respond to the recent departure of senior industrial directors Tom Davis and Howard George.
John Ogden, managing director of CB Richard Ellis in Manchester, commented: "We are pleased that Mike is joining our industrial team and his experience, particularly in forward-funding and development work, complements the expertise we already have in the business.
"We already have a leading Industrial team in the North West region with a very strong client base and a wealth of knowledge, Mike's arrival will further strengthen this and will hopefully continue to grow our market share."
The appointment follows the promotion of Jonathan Thorne to director in the industrial team earlier this year.
Walker is currently on 'gardening leave' and his start date at CBRE has not been revealed.
Colliers will promote Julien Kenny-Levick to head the industrial agency team.
Tony Horrell, chief executive of Colliers International, said: "Mike has spent the majority of his Colliers career working within the logistics and industrial team, and was responsible for heading up this team in Manchester."
No replacement has been named yet for Walker as head of the Manchester office of Colliers.