Power Broker

The Storm Chaser: Alexander Chudnoff on Post-Sandy NYC Recovery Efforts

Alex Chudnoff.

Alexander Chudnoff, a commercial leasing broker who takes pride in strengthening relationships with clients through “impeccable service,” was especially busy in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

The Jones Lang LaSalle executive managing director was dividing his time last week between volunteer efforts in the Rockaways, where he provided hot pizza and coffee to storm victims, and getting on the phone to make sure his Downtown Manhattan clients could stay open. Though it was a difficult time, the activity of making connections was just what attracted Mr. Chudnoff to the business in the first place.

“I love to make calls. I love to canvass,” he said. “I like to develop the relationship.”

In some cases, the storm required short-term arrangements, such as lining up space with other clients or in Jones Lang’s own offices, he said. In others, clients were able to proceed with minimal disruption, as when Dentsu Holdings USA returned to work at 32 Avenue of the Americas when Rudin Management opened the building the Monday after the storm. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Capital One Grows, Minus Pains

Rick Lyon.

Capital One Bank has grown steadily since it was founded by current chairman, CEO and president Richard Fairbank in 1993. Along the way it grew from a mono-line credit card company funded through the capital markets into a more diversified entity with commercial and consumer banking. It managed to make Visigoths funny and capitalize on Alec Baldwin’s Words With Friends meltdown, while simultaneously deepening its reach into lines of business like commercial real estate.

The bank as a whole had $294.5 billion in loans outstanding and $216.5 billion in deposits as of March 31, 2012, according to its first quarter 2012 results. The commercial and multifamily real estate portion of this increased when comparing year-end results recently as well—rising to $15.4 billion for the period ended Dec. 31, 2011 from $13.4 billion the previous year. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Wells Fargo’s Alan Wiener: Massive Multifamly Biz and Unwelcomed Guests

Alan Wiener.

Alan Wiener called the whole thing “weird.” And for several reasons it was a somewhat unusual scenario—two bus loads of folks from the Bronx 99% Spring, an Occupy Wall Street offshoot, gathered on his lawn Saturday April 14, 2012, a beautiful spring day. The buses had pulled up to the private drive leading to his Rye home as men, women and children took the short walk to Mr. Wiener’s property (click through to the end to read the letter the group left him).

Heidi Hynes, a spokeswoman for the group, told The Mortgage Observer that they chose Mr. Wiener “because he’s in charge of multifamily mortgages and because the Bronx is filled with multifamily housing.” Also, she said, he lives in Rye, which wasn’t far to travel. According to Ms. Hynes, Mr. Wiener is part of the predatory banking system that had over-financed mortgages and then received bailout money from the government, even as programs for poor kids in the Bronx were cut. Read More

Trading Spaces

Bed Bath & Beyond Building on the Block; Could Fetch $500 M., Sources Say

620 Sixth Avenue.

Hot on the heels of RXR Realty’s purchase of the Starrett-Lehigh Building for $900 million and the sale of 111 Eighth Avenue to Google for $1.8 billion, Bed Bath & Beyond’s building is on the block.

A partnership of Joseph Chetrit and Yair Levy, spearheaded by Charles Dayan from Bonjour Capital, bought the building for $289.8 million in 2005, according to city records. But with the trendy Chelsea office market enjoying a boom, driven in no small part by the tech bubble, the building could sell for around $500 million, according to some sources. Read More