The Real Deal New York

Category: Paydirt

  • From left: Ofer Yardeni, Miguel McKelvey, Adam Neumann and Spencer Rascoff

    WeWork grows up: WeWork brought in some adults to help manage the $16.9 billion playground. James Woods, the head of the Brooklyn Bowl, came on board, as did Richard Gomel, a former executive at Starwood Capital and Junius Real Estate Partners. [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Raphael Toledano, Howard Lutnick and Harry Macklowe (Credit: Michael McWeeney and Getty Images)

    For whom the bell tolls: The industry loves a good crash-and-burn story. And if the protagonist is a mile-a-minute, patent leather-shoe-clad braggart kid from New Jersey, all the better.

    Rafi Toledano has been a source of fascination for real estate players (and for me, personally) ever since he emerged as the buyer of the Tabak family’s East Village portfolio. When the former broker from Lakewood pulled off the $97 million purchase in September 2015, people asked themselves: Who is this kid and how the hell did he do it? Most people thought it the deal of a lifetime, a 16-building apartment package in a neighborhood where rents have been climbing steadily, bought for a song. They thought, however, that he would fall – an overleveraged rube, they said. [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Rendering of 50 Hudson Yards, Jared Kushner (credit: Getty Images) and 40 Wall Street

    The era of the $4 billion office tower is upon us.

    Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group are pegging the cost of 50 Hudson Yards, a 2.8 million-square-foot, 985-foot-tall tower, at $3.94 billion. That’s according to an application, spotted by TRD’s Rich Bockmann, that the partners filed with the New York City Industrial Development Agency. The estimate makes it the priciest office building expected to be built in New York, eclipsing 1 World Trade Center (pegged at $3.8 billion). [more]

    Comments
  • Clockwise from left: CoStar’s Andrew Florance, average sales prices for new development (Credit: CityRealty) the Clock Tower in Long Island City and Joseph Beninati, a rendering of 3 Sutton Place

    From 2013 to 2015 , this is what qualified for “normal”: a record-breaking sale was immediately bested by another, asking prices were determined by comps from a wildly unrealistic peer group, and the target buyer was a 1% captain of the universe. So what does it look like when “normal” becomes…well, normal again? [more]

    Comments
  • Clockwise from left: Bob Knakal as a rōnin, a Secret Service badge and Kips Bay Court

    Clockwise from left: Bob Knakal as a rōnin, a Secret Service badge and Kips Bay Court

    The first scene from Akira Kurosawa’s 1961 classic “Yojimbo” shows a warrior tossing a stick in the air and choosing his path based on the direction the stick lands in. He is, after all, a rōnin, a samurai with no master. Which is what Bob Knakal could be as early as January 2018. [more]

    Comments
  • Clockwise from top left: The founders of VTS and Hightower, the retail space at 650 Fifth Avenue, and Raphael Toledano (Photo by Michael McWeeney)

    Clockwise from top left: The founders of VTS and Hightower, the retail space at 650 Fifth Avenue, and Raphael Toledano (credit: Michael McWeeney)

    In many Eastern societies, the arranged marriage is still a thing. A bride and groom are stacked up on paper, and if enough boxes — family wealth, background, education, status — line up, a match is struck. [more]

    Comments
  • Jared Kushner and Jonathan Gray

    Jared Kushner and Jonathan Gray

    Kushner breaks the silence: “This guy got Trump elected,” screams the headline for Forbes’ new cover story on Jared Kushner, the first real interview the developer has given since getting involved in Donald Trump’s against-all-odds presidential campaign. Kushner told the magazine he spearheaded his father-in-law’s incredibly successful digital outreach.

    “I called some of my friends from Silicon Valley, some of the best digital marketers in the world, and asked how you scale this stuff,” he said. Eric Schmidt, chairman of Google holding company Alphabet, described Kushner as “the biggest surprise of the 2016 election.” [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Donald Trump, the White House, Jared Kushner, the New York State Capitol in Albany and John Banks

    From left: Donald Trump, the White House, Jared Kushner, the New York State Capitol in Albany and John Banks

    Decision 2016: For the first time in history, a New York developer is heading to the White House. Real estate has always been at the nexus of money and power in New York City, but it’s been a bit player at best on the national stage. Some of Donald Trump’s compatriots believe now is the time to change that.  [more]

    Comments
  • Clockwise from left: Buildings attempting to look more "sold", the new development battle and Steve Roth (Illustration by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    Clockwise from left: Buildings attempting to look more “sold,” the new development battle (illustrations by Lexi Pilgrim for TRD) and Steve Roth

    A king without an heir: In a meeting at Vornado HQ in late 2014, Steve Roth was being Steve Roth: Holding court, making wisecracks, talking over the rest of his 220 Central Park South team. Then, his secretary entered the room and handed him a note. Roth read it, sprung up, and left the room without a word. A few minutes later, he walked back in, grabbed a seat, and took over the meeting again without an explanation. The note, crumpled up, was left on the table, where it was later retrieved by a project insider. It said, simply: “Mrs. Roth on the phone.” [more]

    Comments
  • Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio have both made Airbnb a target (Illustration by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio have both made Airbnb a target (Illustration by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    Not since Stuy Town has such a massive apartment package been in play. [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Adam Neumann, Chen Siqing and Wee Ee Cheong

    From left: WeWork’s Adam Neumann, Bank of China’s Chen Siqing (credit: Getty) and United Overseas Bank’s Wee Ee Cheong (credit: Getty)

    WeWork, the co-working golden child seen by some as the future of real estate, has taken a beating of late — critics have loudly questioned the fundamentals of its model and the firm has struggled to reduce costs and meet growth targets. It’s now trying something different: Just a day after news of a $260 million infusion valuing the company at $16.9 billion broke, WeWork vice chair Michael Gross said the company was looking to acquire buildings that could house its co-working and co-living spaces. [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Gary Barnett, Joe Chetrit, Doug Harmon and Adam Spies

    From left: Gary Barnett, Joe Chetrit, Doug Harmon and Adam Spies

    Poaching the trophy hunters: New Yorkers aren’t in the habit of looking to Boston for anything. But it might be worth making an exception to understand Cushman & Wakefield.

    Last September, Cushman’s New England division took a body blow when Rob Griffin, Boston’s top real estate rainmaker, decamped for Newmark Grubb Knight Frank. Seventy other Cushman brokers and employees joined him there, leaving Cushman decimated.  [more]

    Comments
  • Clockwise from left: A portion of Donald Trump’s 1995 tax returns, map of Manhattan and Mark Twain and Sam Zell

    Clockwise from left: A portion of Donald Trump’s 1995 tax returns, map of Manhattan and Mark Twain and Sam Zell

    The dirt on dirt: Mark Twain’s memo must have got lost in the mail. “Buy land, they’re not making it anymore,” isn’t a mantra Manhattan developers are abiding by. And judging from asking prices for sites versus what apartments are selling for, it’s easy to see why. [more]

    Comments
  • From left: Jared Kushner, 45 East 22nd Street, and 100 Barclay

    From left: Jared Kushner, 45 East 22nd Street, a screenshot of Rentlogic and 100 Barclay

    UPDATED, 2:30 p.m.. Sept. 26: Transparency is apparently overrated: “I’ve never been in the position where I thought providing detailed information about the market is a bad idea,” Gary Malin, president of Citi Habitats’, told TRD at the start of September. He was referring to the firm’s new partnership with RentLogic, a startup that tracks building violations and complaints to help tenants understand the buildings they’re considering renting in. [more]

    Comments
  • Chinese institutional investors active in New York are getting more adventurous, and more demanding

    There’s a tendency to dismiss Chinese institutional investors in New York as seekers of parking space. Slow and steady asset appreciation are the goals, observers say, rather than a big upside. Faced with a fraught economic environment back home, the Chinese just want to rest easy, it’s said, and their pillows of choice are trophy buildings.

    While that’s still true when it comes to their investments in many parts of the U.S., the situation in Manhattan is now quite different: The Chinese are increasingly taking on luxury ground-up development projects, some of the most complex and risky bets in this town. And they’re doing it on their own terms. [more]

    Comments
  • From clockwise: Michael Shvo, Bill Zeckendorf, Sr., Andrew Chung and TRD analysis of NYS Attorney General and NYC Dept. of Finance filings, news articles and sources.

    (Paydirt is a new weekly column that riffs on the biggest NYC real estate news of the moment, providing analysis and historical context on the deals and players that make this town tick.)

    That’s Shvo business: New York real estate is a magnet for dreamers with chutzpah, but even among them Michael Shvo stood out. He moved from Israel with $3,000 and no plan and ended up pioneering a showmanship-heavy approach to selling that helped him break records as a broker. As a developer, he went right for the big fish: splashy condo projects with brand-name architects. Along the way, his signature traits — the custom suits, the swagger, the ruthlessness, the endless swigs of Diet Coke — became part of industry folklore, and Shvo became the guy the industry loves to hate.  “In my 20 years in this business,” the Corcoran Group’s Pam Liebman told New York Magazine in 2005, “I have never seen one man inspire such across-the-board loathing.” [more]

    Comments
  • From clockwise: 252 East 57th Street, 111 West 57th Street, an illustration of Bill de Blasio and Andrew Cuomo, Robert Reffkin drawn as a unicorn and 23 Wall Street in the Financial District (illustration by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    (Paydirt is a new weekly column that riffs on the biggest NYC real estate news of the moment, providing analysis and historical context on the deals and players that make this town tick.)

    I am unicorn, hear me whinny: Compass has become the New York residential world’s first-ever unicorn, Silicon Valley-speak for a startup valued at $1 billion or more. It’s a remarkable achievement for a three-year-old firm operating in an industry that relies on the talent of contract workers rather than any deep-rooted competitive advantage. Let’s put that $1 billion figure into perspective. Click here to read more.

    Comments
  • roundup

    From clockwise: Hudson Yards, Midtown East, Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Thani, and the Empire State Building (Illustration by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    (Paydirt is a new weekly column that riffs on the biggest NYC real estate news of the moment, providing analysis and historical context on the deals and players that make this town tick.)

    Does dodgy diesel have anything to do with the Empire State Building?

    In mid-September, the EPA revealed that Volkswagen had been cheating on its emissions tests. The scandal, which left the German carmaker’s reputation in tatters and rocked its stock, was a big blow for the Qatar Investment Authority, the biggest holder of VW’s preferred shares and the third-largest owner of its common shares. The $335 billion sovereign wealth fund lost about $4.8 billion from the fallout, according to Bloomberg. [more]

    Comments
  • From clockwise: Andrew Cuomo, Kips Bay Court and Jonathan Gray, Wendy Maitland and the Hasidic investors and developers of Brooklyn

    From clockwise: Andrew Cuomo, Kips Bay Court and Jonathan Gray, Wendy Maitland and the Hasidic investors and developers of Brooklyn

    (Paydirt is a new weekly column that riffs on the biggest NYC real estate news of the moment, providing analysis and historical context on the deals and players that make this town tick.)

    Hindu mythology tells of a demon giant, Kumbhakarna, who’d sleep for six months at a stretch. When he’d awaken, he’d devour everything in sight. Since 421a expired in January, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, save for the occasional statement on unions, has been asleep. But the Prince of Darkness is now up, and roaring. [more]

    Comments
  • From clockwise: Aby Rosen and Jared Kushner, Big Brother, Gary Barnett and the Central Park Tower and brokers in 2015 as opposed to brokers in 2016

    The industry news you need to know to start your week (Illustrations by Lexi Pilgrim for The Real Deal)

    (Paydirt is a new weekly column that riffs on the biggest NYC real estate news of the moment, providing analysis and historical context on the deals and players that make this town tick.)

    “What hath God wrought?”

    On May 24, 1844, Samuel Morse sent those words in the world’s first telegraph message. By May 24, 2017, though, the industry may be asking: “What hath Gary Barnett wrought?” [more]

    Comments
MENU