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Barbara Corcoran sells business.

Last week, Barbara Corcoran sold, her eponymous residential brokerage, The Corcoran Group, to a national franchiser.

NRT, a national residential real estate brokerage that is a joint venture between Cendent and Apollo Management, reportedly bought the Corcoran Group for $70 million. The exact amount was not disclosed.

The Corcoran Group will retain its name though it is now part of NRT's national network of firms. NRT, founded in 1997, has 38,000 sales associates and 750 offices. It owns and operates companies in 24 of the nation's largest metropolitan areas. The company is known for its acquisitions of premium residential real estate firms such as Boston's Hunneman Group.

"For years, we have been looking for the right opportunity to enter the New York City real estate market," said Bob Becker, president and chief executive officer of NRT. "We are pleased to do so today with a leader and a company as visionary as Barbara Corcoran and The Corcoran Group."

The firm that she forged with $1,000 back in 1973 was the city's second largest independent firm of its kind. It now has over 500 sales associates.

Other firms had reportedly considered buying the Corcoran Group within the past few years. Corcoran herself was said to be waiting for the top of the market to sell.

The announcement generated little shock among industry sources as Corcoran's intention to sell the firm was widely known.

"Her timing is good. She sold at the end of a boom period," said Alan Rogers, chairman and CEO of Douglas Elliman, Manhattan's largest residential firm.

Rogers described the negotiation period as "protracted," since in his words "she's been trying to sell the firm for some time."

As for the deal, Rogers saw this as a potential advantage for other luxury firms such as his.

"Cendent is a franchise, with no luxury brands. I think this will drive clients to the luxury brands," he said, adding that New Yorkers are "very conscious" of finding the right firm to use.

Asked if he had knowledge of the sale price, Rogers said that "around $67 million" was what he heard.

"NRT is the leader in the luxury market in every other city but New York," said Scott Durkin, chief operating officer of the Corcoran Group.

Corcoran had distanced herself from the business in the last few years.

"This is a continuation of a trend. Cendant has been examining this market for a number of years," said Marc Broxmeyer, one of the principals of residential firm Belmarc.

Corcoran will remain as chairwoman of the firm.

"This is a terrific match for us. We have been working toward this transaction with NRT for several months," said Barbara Corcoran.
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Title Annotation:The Corcoran Group to NRT
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 3, 2001
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