HFZ’s Ziel Feldman takes reins, partner Nir Meir is out: sources

Incident this week comes as developer is battling with lenders, contractors on several properties

Nir Meir and HFZ founder Ziel Feldman (Photos via iStock; HFZ)
Nir Meir and HFZ founder Ziel Feldman (Photos via iStock; HFZ)

 

UPDATED, 6:30 p.m., Dec. 11: HFZ Capital Group’s chairman Ziel Feldman has taken over day-to-day management at the development firm, and his partner, Nir Meir, is out, The Real Deal has learned.

An email sent to Meir’s address on Friday afternoon bounced back with the following message: “Thank you for your email. Nir Meir is no longer affiliated with HFZ Capital Group LLC, its subsidiaries or affiliates.”

Reached Friday afternoon, Meir, who was managing principal at HFZ, referred inquiries to his spokesperson, who said that Meir is “stepping down from the day-to-day running of the business and he remains a vested partner exactly as he has been.”

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A spokesperson for HFZ sent the following statement: “HFZ is pleased to announce that its founder Ziel Feldman has returned to the day to day management of the company. Mr. Feldman will assume the responsibilities of Nir Meir, who is no longer with the company.”

The incident comes as HFZ, one of New York’s most prominent condominium developers and owner of a large nationwide portfolio, is engaged in multiple conflicts with its lenders and investors across several projects. Construction at its flagship condo project, The XI, stalled last month, and last week, HFZ’s lender took over its equity stake in a 12 million-square-foot last-mile portfolio. CIM Group has sought to foreclose on four mezzanine positions tied to four HFZ Manhattan condo projects, though this week HFZ won a ruling to stay the foreclosure. Starwood Capital Group alleges that HFZ owes $157 million on loan payments tied to the Chatsworth, a co-op conversion at 344 West 72nd Street.

Feldman and Mier started HFZ in 2005, and have brought 2,500 luxury unit to market, according to the company’s website. Its completed projects include the Halcyon at 305 East 51st Street, the Bryant at 16 West 40th Street, and the Marquand at 11 East 68th Street. Apart from the XI, a Bjarke Ingels-designed 236-unit project on the High Line, HFZ is converting the Belnord on the Upper West Side and  88-90 Lexington, the Astor at 235 West 75th Street and 301 West 53rd St into condos. 

Correction: A previous version of this story characterized events related to Meir’s departure that could not be confirmed.