Compass to acquire Bold New York

120-agent firm reps new development rentals including American Copper, 20 Broad

Compass CEO Robert Reffkin and Bold CEO Jordan Sachs (Photos via Compass, Bold/Illustration by Kevin Rebong for The Real Deal)
Compass CEO Robert Reffkin and Bold CEO Jordan Sachs (Photos via Compass, Bold/Illustration by Kevin Rebong for The Real Deal)

Compass is acquiring Bold New York, a 10-year-old brokerage with a robust portfolio of rental developments, The Real Deal has learned.

The deal, announced by Bold at a town hall meeting Tuesday, will boost the venture-backed firm’s new development marketing division. Bold CEO Jordan Sachs could not immediately be reached for comment.

With 120 agents, Bold punches above its weight with exclusives that include Metro Loft Management’s 20 Broad (533 units) and JDS Development Group’s American Copper (671 units). It is also marketing Greystar’s Hollingsworth, a 380-unit building on West 37th Street, and Slate Property Group’s 118-unit rental at 222 Johnson Avenue in Williamsburg.

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Founded in 2012, Compass has become one of the biggest firms in New York City, with more than 2,100 agents. Nationally, the 18,000-agent firm closed $91.4 billion in 2019 sales, according to Real Trends.

Compass did not immediately return a request for comment.

Despite the strength of the U.S. housing market, New York has seen declining rents, record concessions and high vacancy. In January, Manhattan’s median rent dropped 16.6 percent year-over-year to $3,000, according to data from Miller Samuel. In Brooklyn, the 13.8 percent year-over-year drop to $2,472 was the largest decline since 2008.

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Rental brokers have also been squeezed by policy changes over the past couple of years, including New York’s overhaul of rent stabilization and last year’s ban on tenant-paid broker fees.

Many agents have also been frustrated by daily fees to post rental listings on StreetEasy.

Since 2018, Compass has aggressively ramped up growth by acquiring firms around the country. In New York it struck a deal in 2019 to buy Stribling & Associates, one of the city’s last independent firms with 270 agents.

The brokerage industry has been consolidating over the past year. In January 2020 the Corcoran Group officially merged with sister company Citi Habitats. In June, Brown Harris Stevens merged with its sister company Halstead.

Amid the pandemic, Compass has continued to add agents and make acquisitions, most recently striking a deal to buy title startup Modus.

In January, Compass filed confidentially to go public. The SoftBank-backed firm, which has raised $1.5 billion from investors, was last valued at $6.4 billion after a July 2019 funding round.

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