The Real Deal New York

Compass’ head of expansion, Andi Bernstein, is out

Leonard Steinberg fetes first anniversary at firm, which is looking to branch into other markets

June 02, 2015 01:00PM
By E.B. Solomont


From left: Leonard Steinberg and Andi Bernstein

Andi Bernstein, Compass’ head of expansion and strategic partnerships and an early member of the brokerage’s executive management team, left the firm, The Real Deal has learned.

Bernstein gave notice in April and her last day was Monday, she confirmed in an email to TRD

Bernstein is returning to the media world, where she worked for years before entering the real estate industry. Prior to Compass, Bernstein was a vice president at Oxygen Media, which she helped to launch in 1999.

Compass, which launched in 2013 and raised $73 million from investors, declined to comment on Bernstein’s departure. But the firm’s ability to scale is widely considered a key to its future success.

In November, it expanded to Washington, D.C., after acquiring Lindsay Reishman Real Estate. And it’s currently looking to hire “city launchers,” or local business leads, in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, Miami and the Hamptons, according to its website.

Compass was rumored to be among the firms looking to buy Hamptons-based brokerage Saunders & Associates, though President Andrew Saunders flatly denied the firm is for sale. Locally, Compass is actively looking for office space in Brooklyn, where it has hired top brokers and managers including Lindsay Barton Barrett, Corcoran’s No. 1 agent in 2013, and Patrick Brennan, Corcoran’s former Park Slope sales manager.

Bernstein’s exit comes on the heels of other high-profile departures in recent months. Roy Kim, Compass’ head of new development who previously was a top design executive at Extell Development, left the firm in April. He joined Douglas Elliman in a senior new development marketing role, as TRD reported Monday, and said of his decision to leave Compass that “when your heart’s not in it, it’s time to go.”

Sofia Song, Compass’ former head of research and external affairs, who came from StreetEasy, left her full-time job at Compass in March. At the time, the firm said Song would continue on as a consultant, but she is no longer listed on the website. With Bernstein’s departure, the firm’s 12-person management team now includes just one woman, Ciara Lakhani, whose title is “Head of People & Culture.”

Compass ranked second among the city’s mid-sized firms in TRD’s recent ranking of residential firms. The firm, with nearly 170 agents, had $486.7 million in listings as of March 29, according to TRD’s analysis, based on data from listings provider On-Line Residential.

On Tuesday, Leonard Steinberg – who made headlines when he left Douglas Elliman to join Compass as president – feted his one-year anniversary at the startup with an Instagram post. “A mere 365 days ago the world thought I was crazy,” he wrote. “However, I saw the potential for disruption in an industry aching for change.”