John Grotto has abruptly left the Durst Organization The Commercial Observer has learned.
Mr. Grotto was a top leasing executive at the company, which is one of the most prominent landlords in Manhattan, involved in overseeing deals at many of its top assets, including One Bryant Park, Four Times Square and 205 East 42nd Street.
According to sources familiar with Mr. Grotto’s departure, he left the firm this week with little official notice. A person who knows Mr. Grotto but didn’t want to speak on record because Mr. Grotto himself has not yet spoken publicly about his parting with the company said that he made the decision to leave and that it was done amicably. As of press time, it wasn’t yet clear what Mr. Grotto’s plans were or whether was going to join another firm.
Mr. Grotto could not be reached for comment by press time. Mr. Grotto’s older brother, Joseph Grotto, is also a leasing executive, at the services firm Cassidy Turley. Joseph could not be reached in his office.
A spokesman at the Durst Organization said he could not comment.
Mr. Grotto has overseen numerous leasing deals during his seven years at the Durst Organization and is well regarded in the industry. His tenure appears to have ended on a disappointing note however. Mr. Grotto was negotiating a blockbuster 30,000 square foot deal with the retailer Express for a store in the base of Four Times Square but the transaction fell apart late in the dealmaking process. Just weeks later, Express signed a deal at nearby 1552 Broadway, a building owned by Jeff Sutton, a retail specialist, and SL Green.
The source who knew Mr. Grotto said the collapse of the Express deal and Mr. Grotto’s departure were unrelated.
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