The Real Deal New York

Compass wants to make waves in Malibu

Startup firm hired Jay Rubenstein to lead new office

December 21, 2015 05:45PM
By E.B. Solomont


Clockwise from left: Malibu beachfront, Robert Reffkin and Jay Rubenstein

Barbra Streisand, Courtney Cox and Dustin Hoffman are among the celebrities who call Malibu home. Those A-listers now have a new neighbor: Startup brokerage Compass is opening an office in the tony beachfront community.

On the heels of launching an outpost in Los Angeles in November, the two-year-old firm announced it would expand to Malibu. Although it’s still finalizing a location, Compass said it’s hired Jay Rubenstein, a manager at Coldwell Banker’s Malibu West Office, to lead the new office.

Rubenstein, a 37-year veteran of the real estate business, had been at Coldwell Banker’s Malibu West office since 1994. Last year, the office had an average sale price of $4.5 million.

In New York, Compass’s aggressive recruitment was met with backlash from rival firms. It isn’t shying away from the strategy on the West Coast. The firm said it’s hired 45 agents in Los Angeles since debuting in early November, with top producing agents like Scott Segall, of Douglas Elliman; Jeeb O’Reilly, also of Elliman; and The Agency’s Ari Afshar already in tow.

In Malibu, where the median sale price is $3.795 million, Compass will compete with Coldwell Banker, Sotheby’s, Westside Estate, Pritchett-Rapf and the Agency.

As it buffs up its presence in Southern California, Compass has tapped former Douglas Ellliman VP of Marketing Leanne Rogan to head up marketing operations. Coldwell Banker defectors Stan Richman, a regional vice president, and Kathy Mehringer, a regional director of risk management and education, will also join Compass’ roster.

Compass, which has raised about $125 million from investors and is valued at $800 million, launched its national expansion earlier this year. Headquartered in Manhattan, the brokerage now has offices in Park Slope, Williamsburg, Miami, Boston, Bridgehampton, East Hampton, Washington, D.C., and L.A. It has nearly 400 agents nationwide.

Compass said it has $1.4 billion in exclusive listings around the country and a $2.5 billion new development pipeline.