The Real Deal New York

Bob Knakal out at Cushman

Brokerage said it “terminated its relationship” with veteran broker effective immediately
By Rich Bockmann and Mark Maurer | June 25, 2018 05:44PM

Bob Knakal

Bob Knakal is out at Cushman & Wakefield.

Three-and-a-half years after Cushman acquired Massey Knakal Realty Services, the brokerage severed ties with the investment-sales broker.

“Cushman & Wakefield terminated its relationship with Bob Knakal effective immediately,” a company spokesperson told The Real Deal Monday afternoon.

Knakal could not be immediately reached for comment, and the circumstances of his departure were not clear.

The broker, along with business partner Paul Massey, built his firm into the dominant mid-market investment sales shop in the city before selling the company to Cushman at the end of 2014 for a reported $100 million.

Knakal, who held the title of chairman of New York investment sales, was on a contract that was set to expire some time next month. Sources said he has been interviewing in recent months with several investment-sales brokerages in the city such as JLL and Colliers International.

He is one of the top brokers of middle-market New York investment sales and development sites, with recent deals such as Kushner Companies, CIM Group and LIVWRK’s $340 million purchase of the Watchtower complex at 25-30 Columbia Heights and Northwell Health‘s pending $300 million purchase of an Upper East Side site. (Kushner has since sold its stake in the Dumbo site.)

Around the time that the city’s top investment-sales duo Doug Harmon and Adam Spies negotiated their deal to join Cushman in late 2016, Knakal renegotiated his contract to shorten it by nearly two years.

His former business partner, Paul Massey, left Cushman in April to start his own firm. Peter Hennessy, an executive vice chairman, was fired in March after lashing out at Shawn Mobley — Cushman’s newly appointed CEO for the Americas — over the firm’s new expense policy.

Former Massey Knakal principal James Nelson left Cushman earlier this year for Avison Young, where he’s been building up an investment sales team.