Drew Fenton, Nick Segal file plans for resi brokerage

Top broker and exec register entity, has ties to Avenue 8

Drew Fenton (right) and Nick Segal (Getty, Nick Segal)
Drew Fenton (right) and Nick Segal (Getty, Nick Segal)

The Los Angeles luxury real estate scene continues to go boutique.

Drew Fenton, a top-producing agent with Hilton & Hyland, is striking out on his own in a new venture with veteran brokerage executive Nick Segal, The Real Deal has learned.

Fenton and Segal formed an entity called Carolwood Partners, documents filed with the California Secretary of State’s office show. Fenton and Hilton & Hyland marketing director Ed Leyson, who is also listed as a managing member of the entity, provided an address of 9440 Santa Monica Boulevard, an eight-story office building on the northwest corner of Beverly Drive and Santa Monica Boulevard. But Segal, who was tapped last summer to become Southern California managing director for startup brokerage Avenue 8, provided an address that corresponds with Avenue8’s Los Angeles’ office.

Avenue8 co-founder Michael Martin declined to comment on the filing, but confirmed that Segal remained with the brokerage.

“Nick is deeply entrenched in Avenue 8,” he said when reached by phone Friday. “He’s true and true.”

Justin Fichelson, the other Avenue 8 co-founder, also declined to comment on the filing. He did note that Avenue 8 offers white-label brokerage services for agents who wish to operate their own businesses, similar to Side.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

“We have white label agents,” Fichelson said. “They are completely independent, but we do marketing and brokerage support for them. We are brokerage engines.”

Avenue 8 raised a $14 million Series A round last May, and has been snapping up big names across San Francisco and New York. The firm’s California presence includes about 250 agents, Martin said, roughly split between the Bay Area and L.A.

Fenton, who is listed as CEO of Carolwood, couldn’t be reached for comment, nor could Leyson. Segal, who moved to Avenue 8 from Compass, where he also oversaw Southern California, declined to comment. Segal was previously a co-founder at Partners Trust, which was acquired by Pacific Union, which in turn was absorbed by Compass in 2018.

There has been chatter about the future of Hilton & Hyland, one of the city’s top high-end brokerages, ever since the death of co-founder Jeff Hyland in February. Billy Jack Carter oversees day-to-day operations for the firm, which says it brokered nearly a third of L.A’s deals that were priced $20 million and above. Carter couldn’t be reached for comment Friday; Fenton’s agent page is still active on Hilton & Hyland’s website.

Fenton, a native Angeleno, is recognized as one of the top dealmakers in Southern California. He’s represented trophy properties such as the Chartwell Estate, which Lachlan Murdoch bought in 2019 for a then-record $150 million, as well as the Playboy Mansion, Owlwood and the Hearst Estate. In 2020, he made The Real Deal’s top 10 list of L.A.
County agents as calculated by on-market deals.

Hilton and Hyland has been the launching pad for some of the city’s biggest residential agents, including Mauricio Umansky, co-founder of The Agency, and Branden and Rayni Williams, of Williams & Williams Estate Group.