Bob Knakal Explains the Rise and Sale of Massey Knakal

Robert Knakal (Kristy Leibowitz) is now the chairman of New York investment sales for C&W.

I sit here writing my Concrete Thoughts column for the first time as a member of Cushman & Wakefield. My new title is chairman of New York investment sales for C&W following the sale of Massey Knakal on New Year’s Eve (I cannot say more about the sale at the present time). My friend Peter Grant at The Wall Street Journal described the transaction as “a fairy-tale ending” for the firm which Paul Massey and I started quite a while ago. I disagree. This transaction more acutely represents not an ending but a wonderful new beginning.

During the past couple of months, knowing that this transaction was likely to happen, thoughts about my life at Massey Knakal have been running through my mind with vivid clarity—particularly the early days. Massey Knakal was started on Nov. 15, 1988, and the sale closed 26 years and 46 days later. So how did we get here? Read More

Sales Beat

Savanna and Feil Sell 21 Penn to TIAA-CREF

21 Penn Plaza

Financial services company TIAA-CREF has purchased the 16-story, 378,547-square-foot 21 Penn Plaza building from Savanna and the Feil OrganizationCommercial Observer has learned.

While representatives for both sides of the deal declined to state the purchase price of the renovated Class B building that sits one block west of Penn Station, the owners placed the property on the market this summer with an asking price of about $250 million, Crain’s New York Business reported. Savanna and Feil inked 225,000 square feet of leases and implemented $5 million in building upgrades to deliver the property to TIAA-CREF with 98 percent occupancy, said Robert Knakal of Massey Knakal Realty Services. Read More

concrete thoughts

Time Management Is as Easy as A B C D E

In the commercial real estate brokerage business, the results we produce determine the rewards we receive, and the results we produce are often based on how well we use our time.

It’s important to note that we all have the same 24 hours to utilize each day. We each use our time differently, and often Read More

concrete thoughts

The Outer Boroughs are White Hot

The investment sales market citywide is about as good as it could be. Values are soaring, and the volume of sales is approaching, or ahead of, 2007 peak levels, both in dollar volume and the number of properties sold. The dollar volume of sales in the first quarter of 2014 (1Q14) hit $13.3 billion. This Read More

Trading CRE

ETRE Financial Files for IPO


On Monday, ETRE Financial filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of ETRE REIT (proposed ticker is ECAV) on the NASDAQ exchange. Operating as a limited liability corporation, ETRE REIT would allow public investment in individual commercial real estate properties with the properties held as separate real estate investment trusts. Read More

concrete thoughts

Education is Key to New York’s Future

Mayor Bill de Blasio met with a group of real estate professionals last week to discuss his agenda for New York City. He touched on many of the topics that he addressed during the campaign and in his many news conferences since being elected. Among these, the highlights were public safety, affordable housing and our Read More