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Columbia University Business School Paul Milstein Center for Real Estate

Alumni in the Media

Real Estate Alumni in the Media  

Here is what your fellow Columbia Business School Real Estate Alumni have been doing recently. If you don't see your news mentioned, please let us know.

Matthew Baron ’07

Simon Baron Lands $201M Loan to Buy Out Quadrum’s Stake in LIC Resi Tower

Simon Baron Development landed a $200.8 million loan for its acquisition of its partner’s stake in a 467-unit Long Island City apartment complex. The firm, headed by Jonathan Simon and Matthew Baron, closed on its purchase of Quadrum Global’s interest in the ALTA LIC earlier this week. The transaction, which involved a 96.45 percent stake in the 43-story tower, was valued at $313.2 million.

The Real Deal

Johanna Bartee ’14

Bartee to Lead Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe’s Native CDFI

The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe has launched a Native Community Development Financial Institution (Native CDFI) to spur economic vitalization. And they’ve named a homegrown community member to oversee it. Johanna Bartee, a former investment banker, commercial loan officer and project manager with expertise in technology solutions will lead the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe’s Economic Development Authority (EDA) as Executive Director for the CDFI.

Native Business

Alex Bernstein ’00

Tishman, Ramirez, Durst Among 2019 REBNY Honorees

The Real Estate Board of New York has announced its latest slate of honorees ahead of its annual awards banquet this winter. Recognized for their accomplishments in real estate as well as their charitable contributions throughout the city, the 2019 REBNY Awards recipients include executives from fields of development, property management, construction and brokerage. Winners include...Alex Bernstein, Executive Vice President/New Business at Bernstein Real Estate.

Real Estate Weekly

Henry Boeckmann ’02

Connecticut Lender Doubles Down on Colorado

Private real estate lender Knighthead Funding has provided Denver, CO-based real estate investment and development firm Alpine Investments with a $20 million construction loan for Edge LoHi, the first new condominium development in Denver’s Lower Highland’s (LoHi) submarket in nearly a decade. “It is no secret that Denver boasts one of the strongest economies in the United States, yet it is one of the most undersupplied condo markets among the major U.S. metros,” said Knighthead Principal Jonathan Daniel who led the origination team with vice president Henry Boeckmann out of Knighthead’s Greenwich, CT office.

Real Estate Weekly

Christopher Capece ’04

IDA to Assist Island Park Rental Project

Christopher Capece, vice president of development for AvalonBay, said he hopes the cleanup of the Island Park site can begin later this year, once the company receives site plan approval for the project. Capece said it will likely take three years to complete the new rental community, which will be a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom residences. “We’re looking forward to working further with the DEC and town to make this one of the premier waterfront developments on Long Island,” Capece told LIBN. “The Avalon Great Neck parcel, the old Commander Oil terminal, had a lot of the same site characteristics as Island Park. Both old fuel oil terminals that had multiple above-ground storage tanks with millions of gallons of petroleum storage capacity, both contaminated waterfront sites, and both with tremendous potential.”

Long Island Business News

Allison Chiaramonte ’09

Cats More Welcome in NYC Apartments than Dogs, New Data Shows

Allison Chiaramonte of Warburg Realty recently had rentals in a pet-friendly Upper East Side condo building that had a “very limiting” 40-pound weight restriction for dogs but “no mention of cat restrictions,” she said. “Also, many rentals simply aren’t allow dogs full stop.”

Metro New York

Howard Fiddle ’87

Investment Manager and ‘Global’ School Each Take 15K SF at 7 Bryant Park

CBRE’s Mary Ann Tighe, Howard Fiddle, Evan Haskell, Clyde Reetz, Evan Fiddle and Adele Huang represented the landlord in both deals. “7 Bryant Park is the best boutique building in the burgeoning neighborhood,” Fiddle said in a statement. “The building has spectacular views of Bryant Park from every floor and has a trophy-like design esthetic when viewed from the street.”

Commercial Observer

Two Full-Floor Leases Close at 7 Bryant Park

CBRE has negotiated a pair of full-floor leases at 7 Bryant Park, totaling almost 30,000 s/f at the 28-story tower. Orion Resource Partners, an alternative investment firm, secured more than 14,000 s/f on the 25th floor of the 470,000 s/f building while Whittle School & Studio leased just shy of 13,900 s/f on the 27th floor. Mary Ann Tighe, Howard Fiddle, Evan Haskell, Clyde Reetz, Evan Fiddle and Adele Huang, represented the landlord, Bank of China.

Real Estate Weekly

Hugh Frater ’85

Fannie Mae Announces Hugh R. Frater as Interim Chief Executive Officer

Fannie Mae, the largest provider of liquidity to the U.S. housing market, today announced that it has appointed Hugh R. Frater as Interim Chief Executive Officer. Frater's appointment will be effective on October 16, 2018.

Fannie Mae press release

Gideon Gil ’00

Brause, Partners Land $110M Refi for New LIC Luxury Tower

The Forge, a new luxury rental tower in Long Island City, just landed a $110 million loan. Cushman & Wakefield’s Gideon Gil, Alexander Hernandez and Noble Carpenter brokered the deal. The new mortgage replaces a $105 million construction loan from M&T Bank and Bank of New York Mellon that closed in 2015.

The Real Deal

Geoff Goldstein ’07

HFF Arranges $15M Construction Financing for Self Storage Facility

Holliday Fenoglio Fowler arranged $15.65 million construction financing for the development of Hillside CubeSmart, a 1,203-unit, self storage facility in Hillside, New Jersey. The HFF debt placement team consisted of senior director Geoff Goldstein, managing director Michael Klein and senior managing director Jay Marshall.

Real Estate Weekly

Aron Graf ’08

StreetEasy Says it’s Improving Premier Agent. But Some Agents Fear Fewer Leads

Aaron Graf, CEO of LG Fairmont, a firm that relies on lead generation, said he’ll keep up his spending if the conversion rate holds—meaning if agents can close the same number of deals for the amount of money the firm currently spends. “I’d rather have my agents making the first contact,” Graf said. “But they have the right to monetize how they want to monetize.”

The Real Deal

William MacDonald ’83

Mill Creek Names MacDonald as Chief Executive Officer

Mill Creek Residential, a leading multifamily investor, builder and operator specializing in premier apartment communities across the U.S., today announced it has named William C. MacDonald as chief executive officer. MacDonald, who has held the role of president since 2016, is a founding shareholder of the company and has a strong track record of leadership, business accomplishments and team building with Mill Creek. The change will be effective Jan. 1, 2019.

PR Newswire

David Neithercut ’82

Equity Residential CEO David Neithercut Announces Retirement

For the first time in more than a decade, Equity Residential is about to have a new leader. The multifamily real estate giant announced this week that its CEO and president, David Neithercut, will be retiring at the end of this year. Neithercut has served in those roles for 12 years. In his stead, Equity Residential promoted Mark Parrell to president and will name him CEO following Neithercut's departure. “I have been honored to serve as a member of Equity Residential’s executive leadership since 1993 and am extremely grateful for the support of our investors, employees and board over the last 25 years,” Neithercut said in a statement.


Clelia Peters ’09

The Future of Real Estate—With Fewer Agents?

Historically, a major role of real estate agents has been to provide information that wasn't available to individual buyers and sellers, such as median sale price, the number of homes for sale and details about individual properties. But with so much information now available to consumers online, the real estate agent's role must change, explains Clelia Warburg Peters, president of Warburg Realty in New York City. “That shift from being guardians of information to really being professional service providers...[the industry has] been very, very slow to recognize and adapt to,” she says.

Yahoo! News

Exclusive Video Interview with NYC Brokerage Leaders

In his latest industry leader interview Sept. 24, RealScout co-founder Andrew Flachner sat down with Bess Freedman, co-president of Brown Harris Stevens; Clelia Warburg Peters, president of Warburg Realty and co-founder of MetaProp; and Steven James, CEO of Douglas Elliman New York. [Video]


10 Years After Airbnb, Real Estate Developers See The Money In Home-sharing

Clelia Peters, founder of MetaProp—an early investor in WhyHotel&explained the model: “WhyHotel works with developers during the lease-up period, when often a significant portion of units lay fallow. It takes those fallow units and basically turns them into furnished, amenitized hotel units.”


More Americans Lying on Mortgage Applications

Do buyers have more power in today's housing market? Warburg Realty President Clelia Peters discusses the report that more than a quarter of homes listed for sale on the market had a price drop and the state of the New York housing market. [Video]

Fox Business

Albert Rabil ’88

Bloomberg Businessweek: Food Options, Real Estate Data

Justin Whitmore, Chief Sustainability Officer at Tyson Foods, discusses how the global food system is impacted by broader sustainability goals. Albert Rabil, CEO at Kayne Anderson Real Estate, and Joe Coughlin, Director of MIT’s Age Lab, talk about partnering to use demographic research to find investment opportunities. [Podcast]

Bloomberg Businessweek

Robert Reffkin ’03

Burgeoning Real Estate Giant Compass Buying Pacific Union

Compass to Acquire One of Nation’s Top Real Estate Brokerages

“In recent years, real estate professionals and brokerage firms have been reacting to the world others are attempting to create,” Compass Founder and CEO Robert Reffkin said in a statement. “I believe the combination of Compass and Pacific Union will be a definitive step in building a company that can ensure the future of real estate is driven by the vision and aspirations of real estate professionals.”

HousingWire & Mortgage Professional America

Compass New Sign brings ‘Wave of Future’ to Today’s Property Marketing

Last week, Compass’s valuation was at $4.4 billion. Founder and CEO Robert Reffkin discussed with CNBC ‘Squak Box’ hosts of his company’s updated business trajectory. “We’re announcing a $400 million dollar round which allows us to accelerate our vision of 20 percent market shares in the top 20 cities by 2020,” Reffkin said. “And in the months ahead, our first international city.”

Culver City News

Show Me the Waze: Compass Partners with Navigation App as Part of Tech Push

“The investments have allowed us—and let us—accelerate our growth in marketing and support, in technology and [in new geographic] regions,” Reffkin told The Real Deal last month.

The Real Deal

After Latest Round, Compass Closes In on $1.2 Billion Raised

Compass, founded in 2012 and headquartered in New York City, is led by Allon and CEO/Founder Robert Reffkin. With more than 7,000 agents, the company’s coast-to-coast reach includes the Bay Area, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Washington, D.C. The company estimates it will hit $34 billion in sales volume this year, and it intends to open in Austin and Houston, Texas, and Nashville, by the end of the year.


Health Care for All? Compass and Cigna Roll Out Agent Coverage

With more than 7,000 agents working under its banner, Compass is wading into health care coverage. The venture backed-firmed said Monday that it’s partnering with national insurance provider Cigna to offer agents the opportunity to purchase their own health care plans in 13 states...“Because prices are so high on the open market, there are tens of thousands of agents who are going without any health insurance,” CEO Robert Reffkin said on Instagram.

The Real Deal

Robert Reffkin: “I believe the traditional brokerage model is not sustainable”

“I believe the traditional brokerage model is not sustainable,” said Compass CEO Robert Reffkin, a panelist at the event at Mana Wynwood in Miami. He added, “Well before Compass came into place, splits were out of control.” The biggest issue “that no one is talking about,” he added, is the sustainability of the traditional brokerage firm.

The Real Deal

Matthew Rosenzweig ’91

Marcus & Millichap Closes Five Sales in Brooklyn Totaling $9.5 Million

1017 Fulton St., a 2,400 s/f mixed-use property sold for $1.45 million. Jakub Nowak, Matthew Rosenzweig, and Robert Lawrence of Marcus & Millichap had the exclusive listing, and acted on behalf of the buyer and seller.

New York Real Estate Journal

Zak Schwarzman ’13

10 Years After Airbnb, Real Estate Developers See The Money In Home-sharing

According to Zak Schwarzman, another partner at real estate-focused VC MetaProp, the trend’s uptick is a no-brainer. “It's no surprise that companies in this category with a clear value prop are receiving a warm reception from the multifamily community,” Schwarzman said. “WhyHotel offers developers significant newfound revenue by managing their yet-to-be-rented inventory as short-term hospitality during a building's lease-up period. Who would say no to that?”


David Simon ’85

Macerich and Simon Join Forces to Develop an LA Outlet Mall

“We are very pleased to partner in the development of this one-of-a-kind outlet project on great, well-positioned real estate to serve one of the nation’s most attractive markets,” Coppola said in a jointly prepared statement with David Simon, Simon’s chief executive officer and chairman. “We look forward to creating the ultimate outlet destination of choice for both local residents and international visitors to Los Angeles.”

California Apparel News

Simon, Macerich to Develop LA-Area Retail Project

Few details were released by Macerich President Ed Coppola and Simon CEO & Chairman David Simon, including the cost to develop the Los Angeles County site, possible tenants and attractions. It will likely have multiple uses, as Simon, a global developer and operator of retail and mixed-use destinations, recently announced it was spending about $4 billion at its various retail properties to create more mixed-use, experiential-oriented centers.

Commercial Property Executive

U.S. Mall Vacancy Rate Has Hit A 7-Year High, But it's Not Time to Panic

“Demand from tenants for space in our highly productive centers is increasing,” David Simon, Simon's chairman and chief executive, said in the company’s most recent earnings call, in July.


Mall Vacancy Rate Hits 7-Year High

“Leasing activity remains solid and continues to improve. Average base rent...up 3.3% compared to last year,” David Simon, CEO of Simon Property Group, Inc. told analysts in July, according to a transcript from Seeking Alpha. “Retail sales were strong across the portfolio with sales productivity increasing each month throughout the quarter.”

Retail Dive

Simon Property Group CEO: “We’re putting Sears in our rear view mirror”

Simon Property Group CEO David Simon said the continuing waves of Sears Holdings store closings are providing an opportunity for the mall operator, not hurting it. In an earnings call Thursday morning, Simon said 33 stores in Simon-owned properties have closed or will close around the end of this year. Simon said the 17 controlled solely by his REIT will be demolished, replaced and redeveloped—an effort that will cost $1 billion. “We’re putting Sears in our rear view mirror,” Simon said.

The Real Deal

Constantine Valhouli ’03

Cats More Welcome in NYC Apartments than Dogs, New Data Shows

“It was surprising,” Constantine Valhouli, director of research at NeighborhoodX, said of the data. “The slight preference shown to cats isn’t significantly significant from a stats and analysis point of view, but talking to property managers and building owners, it turns out they’re doing this as a result of poorly trained dogs that are loud, that are barking at night and also the wear and tear a larger dog might do with nails with the rise of hardwood floors.”

Metro New York

Demetrios Yatrakis ’10

Lonicera Files Plans for 160-Unit Apartment Complex in DoBro

Lonicera Partners is looking to build a 160-unit apartment complex in Downtown Brooklyn. The firm, headed by Demetrios Yatrakis, filed permits for a 23-story mixed-use property at 308 Livingston Street, just a few blocks away from the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Plans call for a 115,790-square-foot building with 109,331 square feet of residential space and 6,459 square of commercial space.

The Real Deal

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