Keller Williams gets good deal at 425 Park

Firm also has an option to expand further

TRD New York /
Jan.January 17, 2012 02:00 PM

[Updated at 3:12 p.m. with comment from Newmark Knight Frank] More details have emerged regarding Keller Williams NYC’s new 25,000-square-foot space down the street from its existing offices.

The residential brokerage got a “great deal” on their sublease at 425 Park Avenue last month, according to Jeffrey Rosenblatt, senior managing director at Newmark Knight Frank, who represented both Keller Williams and the sublandlord, Lebhar Friedman, in the transaction. The firm also has an option to take another 10,000 square feet in the space in the event of further expansion, a spokesperson for Keller Williams said. Keller Williams’ other New York City office spans 6,000 to 7,000 square feet at Trump Tower at 725 Fifth Avenue, according to a spokesperson for Newmark.

Because of the necessarily short term of the lease, the taking rent in the deal was less than $30 per square foot, according to industry sources, a great deal for The Plaza District. Asking rents down the street at 400 Park Avenue are around $70 per square foot, according to Mrofficespace.com, and brokers working in The Area Indicate That The Asking Price For Sublease Space On Park Avenue on block and comparable nearby blocks is generally at least $60 per square foot.

The building, which spans a whole block between 55th and 56th streets, is home to law firm Kaye Scholer, whose lease also expires in 2015. The firm currently occupies 300,000 square feet at the tower.

Keller Williams NYC, started by Ilan Bracha, who is now chairman, will occupy almost all of the sixth floor at 425 Park Avenue, owned by David Levinson‘s L&L Holding Company, Rosenblatt said, and agents have already begun moving in. The lease runs through 2015, when, as the Wall Street Journal reported just today, the owner will demolish the building. It was not immediately clear if the landlord intends to demolish 75 percent of the building, as the Journal speculated, or will wait for the possible rezoning of Midtown East and consider demolishing the entire structure. Calls to L&L Holdings’ representatives were not immediately returned.

Lebhar Friedman, a marketing company, is subletting the space. It did not immediately return calls for comment.

Despite reports in September that Keller Williams had inked a deal for space at 555 Madison, the firm never actually signed the lease, sources said.

Earlier this year, The Real Deal reported the departure of Adina Azarian as CEO of Keller Williams, who was replaced by Eric Barron. Azarian assumed the role of executive director of new business development.

Keller Williams only launched its New York City presence last year, and has expanded by 100 agents between April and August.


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