April 2016 Issue
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Why Donald Trump is the elephant in the real estate industry

As the developer gets closer to securing the GOP nod, not everyone wants to talk about his presidential campaign

UPDATED, April 5, 10:09 a.m.: Imagine this: a brash, driven son of a New York real estate family ascends the throne. He takes risks, turning a mostly outer-borough portfolio into one made up of trophy Manhattan holdings like the Plaza Hotel, which he brazenly buys for $400 million, completely with borrowed money. During the 1990s, he falls deep into debt and his businesses go into bankruptcy. He appears to be… [more]

Politics aside…

NYC real estate players offer
personal stories about their
encounters with Trump

Donald Trump may arguably be an outsider in the world of NYC real estate, but that doesn’t mean he is without any admirers. With a career that stretches back to the 1970s, he’s crossed paths… [more]

Crossing Trump

A deep dive into the mogul’s NYC real estate litigation offers a unique window into how he’d pursue conflicts as leader of the free world

If Donald Trump gets sworn into office next January, he will be able draw on all the oaths he’s ever given during nearly half a century of suing — and… [more]

Handing over Trump Inc.

If Trump makes it to the White House, divesting from his business empire and avoiding conflicts will not be easy

President Barack Obama earned just shy of $95,000 in royalties last year from the sales of his two autobiographies, “Dreams from My Father” and “The Audacity of Hope.” GOP presidential… [more]

How much does the
Trump brand pay?

Federal filings show the GOP frontrunner made between $9 million
to $36 million in licensing income
over 18 months

Donald Trump has famously plastered his name on everything from skyscrapers to wines, steaks, dress shirts… [more]

The EB-5 Gravy Train

TRD’s five-part investigation on the ‘crack cocaine’ of real estate financing — and who’s profiting from it

Howard Michaels, the tough-talking finance broker, shot off an email in 2014 to his client Michael Shvo. Michaels, who heads the Carlton Group, had just gotten off a long phone… [more]

How much longer will the love affair last?

NYC developers could start pulling back from EB-5 if the cost of capital keeps ballooning

It’s no secret that New York City developers have over the past few years been tapping the EB-5 spigot. Giant builders like Macklowe Properties, Extell… [more]

Reining in regional centers

The EB-5 clearinghouses have emerged as a crucial-but-controversial reality in raising cheap foreign capital, but will they be reformed?

Nicholas Mastroianni II is a man in perpetual motion. The 52-year-old CEO of the U.S. Immigration Fund, which raises money from foreign investors for real estate … [more]

The banking bonanza

Smelling opportunity, financial institutions edge into the EB-5 game and make out big

On a frigid day in February, more than 200 people packed into a ballroom inside the Roosevelt Hotel in Midtown Manhattan — all there to hear about the latest regulatory issues and new legislative… [more]

EB-5’s gatekeepers

Migration agents are operating in a unregulated gray zone, but reaping
big money by connecting developers
to Chinese investors

Last July, a swarm of high-profile guests — including Revlon Chairman Ron Perelman and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger — gathered to… [more]

EB-5: Dead or alive?

A look at four projects facing potential problems, but still seeking EB-5 cash

EB-5 investors by definition live outside the U.S., sometimes thousands of miles away. But it ultimately falls on them to determine which real estate development projects in NYC (or elsewhere… [more]

The Closing: Richard LeFrak

The real estate mogul on his dad’s ‘propaganda,’ his $6.6B
net worth and a cabinet position in a Trump White House

Richard LeFrak is chairman and CEO of the LeFrak Organization, a company started by his great-grandfather, Aaron, in 1905. LeFrak became president in 1975 and… [more]

The ‘Path’ to $4 billion

A look at some of the big-ticket fees that went into the decade-long construction of the Oculus

Architect Santiago Calatrava envisioned an elegant, bird-like PATH station for the high-profile World Trade Center site, but by some accounts what he got was an extravagant symbol of government inefficiency…. [more]

The judges who rule
over real estate

In the Supreme Court’s ‘crowned jewel’ division, several key justices wield
the gavel on some of the
industry’s biggest cases

When a New York real estate deal goes south or a partnership sours, chances are good that someone is going to… [more]

Where the billionaires live

Mapping out the Manhattan homes of NYC’s 79 richest residents

Here’s a fun fact: New York City has more billionaires than any other city on the planet. Last month, Forbes reported that 79 billionaires call the Big Apple home, besting Hong Kong, which has … [more]

The after-hours
construction boom

Why buildings are rising on nights
and weekends

It’s Saturday morning and the alarm clock is silent — but thanks to a new luxury condominium next door, there’s the deafening roar of a pile driver slamming metal deep… [more]

Brooklyn’s new beauty

SHoP delivers ‘stunning’ supertall at 9 DeKalb for JDS and Chetrit

The Academy Award-nominated “Brooklyn” is, among other things, a sign of the times. It was quite apparent to the producers of this film, which celebrates the borough almost to the point of mythology, that the mere allure of its name would be a strong… [more]

The office space
discount debut

TRD analysis finds spike
in price chops at for-lease
Manhattan blocks

It’s official. Manhattan landlords are discounting more of their for-lease office space. Last month, for the first time in at least a year, landlords chopped… [more]

Manhattan’s new
$2M marker

Average apartment prices soar to
record heights, but do they
really represent today’s market?

Remember back in December, when the median price of a Manhattan apartment crossed the $1 million mark for the first time? Brace yourself because another… [more]

Editor’s note:
When the music stops


Dance until the music stops. That was the infamous advice from the former CEO of Citigroup Charles O. Prince III back in July 2007, with the subprime crisis about to bear down on the country. Or more specifically, “When the music stops, in terms of liquidity, things will be complicated…. [more]


After more than a century in the borough,
the group is cashing out
A roundup of news and data on the residential market
A roundup of news and data on the commercial market
The VTS startup founder on surfing, his office kegerator
and his 2.5 billion square feet of office space
A roundup of real estate-related happenings from last month
The Brooklyn rental owner on starting out in the apparel industry, dealing with a hoarder, and what kinds of deals he's doing
Real estate pros share picks for books on work/life balance, business ethics,
and e-commerce
The funniest and most insightful comments
on real estate

Comings and Goings

Greystone Bassuk has promoted Drew Fletcher to the role of president. Fletcher will continue reporting to Richard Bassuk, chief executive officer of the Greystone Bassuk Group. The company said the… [more]

We Heard

Faith Hope Consolo, the outspoken retail maven, has always been viewed as a bit of a drama queen. Now, the 66-year-old Douglas Elliman broker, who’s represented the likes of Cartier… [more]

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