The Real Deal New York

Extell is developing more than 1,500 units in New York. Now it just needs a sales director

"You’re going to be under a microscope for years": source
By E.B. Solomont | August 27, 2018 07:00AM

A wanted poster and Central Park Tower at 217 West 57th Street (Credit: Extell via Curbed NY)

Extell has billions of dollars worth of development underway. Now all it needs is a sales director.

Gary Barnett’s firm confirmed Friday that it’s searching for a head of sales and marketing, following the departure of Anna Zarro earlier this summer. Zarro, who is still consulting on Extell’s rental projects, joined the company from Town Residential in October 2016. Zarro could not be reached for comment.

For one of the city’s most prolific developers, the top sales and marketing job is a key role, but Extell has had something of a revolving door. Zarro replaced Elaine Diratz, a Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group alum who left to join Town in 2016.

Multiple sources said the developer has tapped an executive search firm, Ferguson Partners, to help fill the role. Some possible candidates are rumored to include Andy Gerringer, head of new business development at the Marketing Directors; Stephen Kliegerman, president of Terra Development Marketing, which includes Halstead Property Development Marketing; and James Lansill, a managing director at Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group. All three individuals declined to comment. A representative for Corcoran said Lansill is not leaving the firm.

One sales director who interviewed for the job put it this way: Extell has great projects, but it also comes with a notoriously demanding work environment.

A spokesperson for Extell confirmed the developer is looking for a head of sales and marketing to work on “some of the city’s most exciting and transformative developments ever built.”

Diratz only had positive things to say about Barnett, but acknowledged that being sales director at the firm is a tough job that requires years of new development experience.

But those familiar with Extell’s pipeline said the job — and volume of inventory to move — is daunting.

“He’s got some really tough projects,” said one new development executive. “You’re going to be on the line all the time. You’re going to be under a microscope for years.”

Extell is one of the most active developers in the city with a pipeline that includes 2.99 million square feet and some 1,567 residential units, according to an analysis of building permits by The Real Deal.

The developer’s active projects include One Manhattan Square, an 80-story condo with a sellout of $1.9 billion, and One57, which still has sponsor units left to sell.

There’s also Central Park Tower, a 179-unit project with a projected sellout of more than $4 billion. Sales have not yet officially launched.

Extell landed a $1.14 billion financing for the project, which requires the developer to sell $500 million worth of apartments by 2020. However, that benchmark shouldn’t be hard to reach, according to TRD’s analysis of condo sales this year.

In March, Jason Karadus resigned as sales director of Central Park Tower.

“This was a very corporate position,” he said at the time. “I gave it six months.”