Brazilian oil exec swaps Roger Erickson for BLU Realty in sale of $19M townhouse

By Guelda Voien | July 12, 2013 02:00PM

The owner of a refurbished Upper West Side townhouse that has lingered on the market for the past year has switched listing agents, ditching top broker Roger Erickson of Sotheby’s International and hiring a team of agents from BLU Realty Group.

The six-story, 9,700-square-foot home, at 41 West 74th Street, is now asking $19 million — down from $20 million— and is listed with BLU’s Shane Shimon, Vince Rocco and Mithlesh Kush. It first hit the market a year ago, listed with Erickson.

The assignment is a boon for BLU, which opened in 2011 and last year snatched a listing for an Upper East Side townhouse, at 170 East 80th Street, from another mega-broker: Brown Harris Stevens’ Paula Del Nunzio, as The Real Deal reported. BLU ranked No. 5 in TRD’s 2012 ranking of boutique brokerages, and No. 4 in this year’s ranking of mid-size firms.

Paolo Gouveas, a Brazilian oil executive, bought the neoclassical house — reportedly in all cash — in 2011, according to Rocco. The purchaser listed in public records is the Three Joses LLC, which paid $12.5 million.

The townhouse, Between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West, first made headlines when Howard Lorber’s Vector Group snapped up the mortgage in 2008 (at a discount of about $5 million) after the owner, James Cummings, a Greenwich, Conn.-based developer, ran into financial trouble during the economic downturn, previous reports show.

Cummings thoroughly remodeled the five-bedroom, seven and five half-bathroom (yep, you read that right) brownstone, according to previous reports, and then unloaded the mortgage to Vector.

The posh pad includes a rooftop hot tub, playroom, laundry room and elevator, according to the listing.

As for why Gouveas hired different brokers, Rocco said only: “He liked our enthusiasm.”

Erickson, a top producer at Sotheby’s, was investigated by the New York State Department of State in 2012 for allegedly not disclosing his status as a dual agent in a deal at 812 Fifth Avenue. The case has been referred to the DOS’ litigation department.

Reached via email, Erickson wished BLU the best: “41 West 74th Street is a fabulous townhouse and I wish the new brokers success in marketing it.”