Douglas Elliman and Roy Kim part ways

Extell, Compass alum was chief creative officer for two and a half years

From left: Susan de Franca, Howard Lorber (credit: Getty Images) and Roy Kim
From left: Susan de Franca, Howard Lorber (credit: Getty Images) and Roy Kim

Roy Kim is out as Douglas Elliman’s chief creative officer as competition for new development business heats up.

Kim joined Elliman’s Development Marketing division in 2015 in a newly-created post, in which he advised developers on design, pre-development planning and new development marketing.

“I’m very proud of my time at DEDM,” Kim told The Real Deal via email. “My admiration and respect for my colleagues helped fuel strong work for amazing clients.” He added: “The financial challenges facing new development today are not a secret.”

In a statement, a spokesperson for Elliman said: “Roy Kim is a dedicated new development specialist and we wish him all the best in his next venture.”

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Prior to Elliman, Kim spent nine months at Compass as the firm’s head of new development before he resigned, telling TRD at the time that “when your heart’s not in it, it’s time to go.”

Before Compass, the Vancouver native spent eight years at Extell Development, where he was the top design executive and worked on One57 and the Carlton House. He’s also worked at Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group and on the design teams for architects Rem Koolhaus and Zaha Hadid.

Although Elliman has been expanding to new markets — this summer it said it would purchase Los Angeles-based Teles, and the firm is also acquiring Boston-based Otis & Ahearn — the new development space is increasingly competitive thanks to an oversupply of luxury condominiums.

During an earnings call in March, Chairman Howard Lorber said for Elliman’s parent company, Vector Group, there are few investment opportunities in new development. He said Vector would likely make more money from closings than it would put into new projects via its New Valley subsidiary. “We’ll take out more than we put in because we really haven’t found anything great to invest in,” he said.

Elliman was the No. 2 firm on TRD’s August ranking of new development firms. The brokerage sold $5.92 billion worth of new development product between June 1, 2014 and May 30, 2017, according to TRD’s analysis. Its most high-profile assignment in New York is CIM Group and Macklowe Properties’ 432 Park Avenue, but it’s also handling Ian Bruce Eichner’s Madison Square Park Tower at 45 East 22nd Street.