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Deals & Dealmakers

Rob Speyer takes reins as sole CEO at Tishman Speyer


Tishman Speyer, the owner of trophy assets such as the Rockefeller Center, the Metlife Building and Yankee Stadium, is undergoing a leadership handover.

Rob Speyer, who shared the title of chief executive officer with his father Jerry, is taking over as the company’s sole CEO, marking a dynastic succession for one of New York City’s biggest landlords.

“This is a natural progression in the leadership of the firm and one that also reflects the reality of the way we have been running the business since becoming co-CEO’s seven years ago. As leaders of a private enterprise, we strongly believe in the importance of actively shaping our own future. This means progressive change without losing the continuity of experience and management that is one of our key strengths,” the two wrote in an internal memo sent to all of its employees.

The younger Speyer was named the company’s president and co-CEO in 2008. To accommodate his son’s ascension, Jerry occupied the position of chairman and co-CEO. The elder Speyer will stay on as the company’s chairman.

Rob Speyer had a rough start with the family business. In 2006, he took the lead in closing a $5.4 billion deal to purchase Manhattan apartment complex Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village. Three years later, Tishman Speyer and investment partner Blackrock, defaulted on the largest real estate transaction in the country’s history.


In July 2012, Rob was named chairman of the powerful Real Estate Board of New York, following in teh footsteps of both his father and grandfather. At 43, he was the youngest chair ever appointed by the group.

He has since played a lead role in finding a new president in the form of John Banks, who replaced long-serving officer Steve Spinola this summer, and negotiating to resolve the city’s 421a tax issue.

Tishman Speyer, which was founded in 1978, operates in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. Under the leadership of the Speyers, the firm expanded its portfolio to 133.8 million square feet, boosting its total value to $73 billion.

Recently, the company has been involved in major development deals in New York City, particularly in Manhattan’s Far West Side.

Last year, the firm bought a development site located on 34th Street and 10th Avenue for $438 million. According to company filings, Tishman Speyer plans to spend over $3 billion to build a 61-story property on the site.

In June, the firm bought a development site located in 36th Street and 11th Avenue for $185 million. The land, which sits across from the Javits Center, will be the future site of a 735,000 s/f mixed-use property.


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