Helmsley Spear sheds commercial brokerage operations, plans buying binge

By Adam Pincus | January 22, 2010 05:09PM

The once dominant commercial property firm Helmsley Spear, owned by embattled developer Kent Swig, is ending its third-party commercial brokerage operations to focus on managing its own assets and acquiring others, the company said in a statement.

A division of Helmsley Spear is in negotiations to purchase “several” buildings, either commercial or multi-family, in New York City, a source at Helmsley Spear said.

“We have identified the assets and we are in negotiations. We are past the point of due diligence,” the source said. “We just can’t announce what they are until the contracts have been executed.”

In the company statement, it said, “Helmsley Spear looks forward to announcing several new investment acquisitions over the next 30 to 60 days.”

The source did not reveal how many of the 20 brokers currently listed on the Helmsley Spear Web site would be let go.

“Some of them are being retained and some are being let go,” the Helmsley Spear source said.

The new buildings will be purchased by a division of Helmsley Spear through newly raised “equity and debt,” but the source would nor provide further explanation. Kent Swig, the owner of Swig Equities, is under financial pressure from lenders who have won judgments totaling $53.6 million against him.

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