Here Comes the Bloom: Metro Brokerages Planting New Seeds

Sotheby’s International Realty

In February, Sotheby’s reported that the company expanded its office count worldwide by more than 9 percent last year. Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC maintains 660 offices internationally, with 12,800 sales associates in 47 countries worldwide.

In May 2012, the company signed its first Brooklyn affiliate, Warren Lewis Realty LLC. Warren Lewis is a 28-agent luxury brokerage with offices in Williamsburg and Park Slope. Philip White, president and chief executive officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC, explains the move like this: “We felt their 25 years’ experience in their market and demonstrated record of quality service was an ideal fit. They’re a strong addition to our network in the critical Brooklyn market.”

Space Marketing Shop

Space Marketing Shop is a boutique firm that specializes in properties in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. Co-founders Edward Cho and Aran Scott established Space Marketing Shop in May 2011. They started the company in a small, shared office space, but they recently moved to 55 Broadway in the Financial District, where they have a 3,600-square-foot office. The firm currently has about 35 agents. SMS does a lot of rentals, but is focusing more and more on sales.

Edward Cho, co-founder and principal broker, reports that the company is looking to expand, but wants to do it the right way. “We’re not planning on having just one office,” he says, adding that they’re working with a lot of buyers in Brooklyn. “But we don’t want to expand too fast. Brooklyn and Long Island City are definitely two areas we would love to have offices in.”

Stribling & Associates

The venerable brokerage with deep roots on the Upper East Side has plans to join the hipsters in Brooklyn with a new office at 384-386 Atlantic Avenue, between Hoyt and Bond Streets. The location is in proximity to Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Downtown Brooklyn and Fort Greene, all high-interest areas. Stribling is also planning several renovations to its current office spaces. The firm will transform its Chelsea townhouse at 340 West 23rd Street into a brokerage with an “airy gallery ambiance,” in keeping with the neighborhood it is in. Last fall, Stribling converted the penthouse at its 924 Madison location to accommodate more agents.

Town Residential

Town plans to expand its broker team by 50 percent this year, and recently opened its eighth city location, at 337 West Broadway in Soho, according to The Real Deal. The two-story corner location features an international water bar on the first floor, and café-style seating, with offices for the 35 brokers who work upstairs. Town also has offices in the West Village, the Flatiron District, the Financial District, Midtown, Astor Place and on the Upper East Side.

Town is expanding in other ways, too. At the end of January, the firm announced that Mark David Fromm and Claudia Saez-Fromm, the husband-and-wife team behind Mark David & Company Real Estate, would join the Town team as senior vice presidents. A Real Estate Weekly article notes that Mark David & Company is being “wound down”—some of the 75 agents who worked for the company will join Town as well, while others will be assisted in finding positions at other firms.

npring@observer.com

Here Comes the Bloom: Metro Brokerages Planting New Seeds