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NY brokerage star returns.

He's back! After a two-year stint in the world of office development, Steve Siegel, former chairman of Cushman & Wakefield and one of the nation's most respected brokers, is "coming home" to New York and brokerage/consulting.

Siegel will be assuming the presidency of Edward S. Gordon Company, Inc. (ESG) and Ed Gordon will retain the chairmanship.

"I'm looking forward to getting back on the bicycle and riding it," Siegel said.

Siegel left Cushman & Wakefield in 1988 to be president, chief executive officer and principal of Chubb Realty, Inc, a new real estate development subsidiary of insurance leader Chubb Corporation and sister company Bellemead. Siegel says he has sold back his interest in Chubb and will maintain a consulting arrangement on an "as need" basis.

The move, Siegel recognizes, is a reflection of the industry's shift from a development-oriented business, in the late 70's and 80's, to a service-minded field today. Siegel points to how development giants -- such as Trammel Crow and Sammis -- have put their shovels aside, for the most part, to become viable representatives for institutions as tenant representatives, managers, or workout specialists.

"The development business for all intents and purposes has gone the way of the dinosaur," Siegel said. "I think the existing service companies are positioned now to enjoy the best years ever imagined."

Siegel said it could be five to seven years before development makes its comeback.

This shift, Siegel said, began happening aroud '87 or '88 when leasing became more difficult and more competitive.

"We were running against the tide within months of starting the company," he said.

Siegel said he is proud of what Chubb achieved while he led the firm, and overall, he said, their properties will enjoy "the fruits" of an improved business environment.

"We created some beautiful buildings and we purchased a top-of-the-line building in Dallas," he beamed. "... Overall they'll be in pretty good shape."

Among Chubb's accomplishments are what Siegel terms "two triple-A assets" in New Jersey. In partnership with Dubrow Development, Chubb built Westgate, a two-building office development on the Route 78 corridor of Somerset County, New Jersey. In Edison, Chubb built Metroview, a 195,000-square-foot office building, withthe Seltzer Organization. In downtown Washington, D.C. Chubb is completing a 450,000-square-foot office project designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox. They also purchased a 60-story tower in downtown Dallas.

At ESG, Siegel will be involved in managing day-to-day operations as well as some tenant procurement, assignments, and recruiting brokers. In this period of flux, Siegel said, there is a lot of talent that can be added to one's team.

"This is the time you can really build up your business," he said.

ESG maintains two brokerage offices in Manhattan, two in New Jersey, and one in Westchester. The management department provides management, financial and construction services for more than 27 million square feet of office space owned by corporations, landlords and large financial institutions. Its Corporate Realty Group (CRG) division, located in Houston, serves the needs of corporations nationwide, including McGraw Hill, Coopers & Lybrand, Computer Services Corporation and Houston Industries.

The firm has provided consulting services to such corporate biggies as: Chase Manhattan Bank, United Technologies, AT&T, and Sony. Last year, in the largest office transaction of the year in the United States, ESG arranged for Sony to lease the AT&T building in Manhattan.

During his 27 years at Cushman & Wakefield, Siegel rose impressively through the ranks. He began as a junior accountant in 1961 and moved on to sales, opening the New Jersey Office of C&W in 1981. He became president and chief executive officer and in 1984 he became chairman. In 1987, he was the leading Cushman & Wakefield broker nationwide.

In his triumphant brokerage career, Siegel arranged expansions and relocations of corporate headquarters for many corporations, law firms, and financial institutions, including: Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett; Arthur Young; Ebasco Services; Toys R Ys; Continental Insurance and the Chubb Corporation. He also brokered the sale of such properties as 75 Rockefeller Center and 250 Park Avenue, and the acquisition of the land beneath Giants Stadium in the Meadowlands.

Siegel also lends his time to a number of civic and cultural organizations. Among other memberships and honors, he is the general chairman of the Association for the Help of Retarded Children.

As Siegel re-enters, the brokerage arena, he urges his fellow brokers to be "client oriented" not transaction-oriented.

"This is the time brokers can really add value to the process and this is also the time the real estate professional is held with highest regard," he said.

"I can't think of a time you can do more for a tenant and owner in a transaction."
COPYRIGHT 1992 Hagedorn Publication
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:Profile: Stephen B. Siegel
Author:Fitzgerald, Therese
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Article Type:Biography
Date:Jan 15, 1992
Words:777
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