“If you had told me we would have had this many people for a friggin’ mortgage company opening–give me a break,” said Donald Trump, speaking to several hundred people crammed into a lower level space at Trump Tower.
It’s not typical that an 11 a.m. mortgage company launch could turn into a media circus.
“When Don [Trump, Jr.] and I struck the deal, we said, ‘We’ll have a new conference,” continued Mr. Trump. “What we didn’t expect was Extra!, Access Hollywood, Entertainment Tonight, and some of the other folks up here. Take a look Lois–my friend Lois [Weiss] from the New York Post.”
Mr. Trump was joined by E.J. Ridings , the new company’s President and CEO, and his son, who is also involved in the project. Sadly, Ivanka–who was scheduled to attend–didn’t show up.
“The business they’re doing is unbelievable,” said Mr. Trump in typically, grandiose fashion. “Literally, we signed the lease a few months ago, they are going to take an additional floor.”
And to appease the audience that was packed together (and the tourists riding up and down the escalator overhead, snapping photos on cell phones), Mr. Trump uttered the famous phrase. He told Mr. Ridings that the company needs to keep up with the current pace, or else….
“If it’s not, E.J., You’re fired!”
After Mr. Trump’s short speech, the motley crew of reporters–ranging from Life & Style to National Mortgage News–pushed up to the stage where the developer was fielding questions.
Regarding, his idea of bringing the “suit and tie” back to the industry.
“There’s something about the old-fashioned mortgage service,” Mr. Trump told The Real Estate. “It’s never going to be duplicated. But we’re involved in the Internet, too.”
A mortgage reporter asked about secondary investors, while a celebrity journalist asked if Melania was taking off the weight since her recent pregnancy. But how does he intend to break into a three trillion dollar a year business?
“I don’t think anybody ever had the brand,” he told The Real Estate. “There’s never been a great brand out there. [Mr. Ridings has] got what a lot of people are saying is the hottest brand in the country–in the world!”
“I just bought 1,000 acres of land in Scotland. I’m going to do one of the great golf courses in the world. It’s the biggest story in Europe right now. It’s on the front page of every paper. That helps a guy like this–who’s a talented mortgage guy–but without the brand, he may [as well] have his father here. His father will be here, but Lois won’t, and you guys won’t.”
Is a golf course really the biggest story in Europe?
As if on cue, a German television crew pushed their way into the mix.
“See, that’s a big deal in Germany,” said Mr. Trump. “They sent their big one!”
– Michael Calderone