If New York Police Department Commissioner Raymond Kelly decides not to run for mayor of New York City mayor, though he has not announced a run for City Hall, John Catsimatidis, the owner and CEO of the Red Apple Group and Gristedes Foods, said he will take Kelly’s place. This would add Catsimatidis to a list of current candidates with real estate ties, as The Real Deal previously reported. Catsimatidis himself has $700 million to $800 million in real estate interests through Red Apple, he told The Real Deal in an interview last summer.
The New York Post reported that Catsimatidis said he was ready to rise to the occasion if needed during a speech last night at the Hellenic American Bankers Association.
“If Ray chooses not to run, I will,” Catsimatidis said.
In an interview with The Real Deal last August, Catsimatidis mentioned that Mayor Michael Bloomberg asked him not to run for mayor on the Republican ticket in 2009, but rather to use his influence to get Bloomberg the nomination.
When The Real Deal asked him if he planned on running, Catsimatidis responded that he was “urging” Kelly to run, and added, “If he doesn’t, I may.” [Post]