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Contrasting views of the marketing switch at 550 Vanderbilt, via the Real Deal

If you read the latest issue of the Real Deal, two articles published 8/1/17 offer contrasting views of the marketing switch made by Greenland Forest City Partners, swapping Corcoran Sunshine for Nest Seekers International.

From Solving NYC’s condo riddle:
A first line of defense for many developers is to shake up their marketing teams.
That’s what Forest City New York and Greenland USA did just last month at their 278-unit Brooklyn condo 550 Vanderbilt, where sales started strong but slowed to a trickle last year. Two years after launching, the project is about 65 percent sold.
But how much of that early marketing success could be credited to Corcoran Sunshine, if a good chunk of units were sold--thanks to Greenland's domestic connections--to buyers in China?

From the article:
Still, the developers have refused to cut prices at the tower because they’ve counting on the building to establish a high price bar for other buildings at their Pacific Park megaproject.
“We’ve made a deliberate decision to hold at a certain point, because it’s going to set the market — not just for the building — but the neighborhood we’re invested in,” said MaryAnne Gilmartin, president and CEO of Forest City’s New York office.
The Real Deal suggests that's "welcome news to 550 Vanderbilt’s early buyers," because it gets tougher to refinance or sell units when prices get cut or rented out. Then again, if some early buyers are just parking their assets in a safe(r) offshore investment, maybe they wouldn't mind.

A contrasting view

From Who’s winning condo marketing’s game of musical chairs:
[Corcoran Sunshine's Kelly Kennedy] Mack said if a brokerage pursued the wrong sales strategy, switching firms may be justified, but she added that in most cases it does little good.
Swapping new development marketing firms is similar to firing the coach of a losing soccer team with a less-than-stellar lineup of players. In other words, it’s a more viable option than firing the whole team.
“It’s easy to blame the marketing agent,” said [Compass's Leonard] Steinberg. The alternative, he argued, is to blame the market — but doing so would imply that the developer miscalculated.
Compass is not involved in 550 Vanderbilt, but the point is that marketing is only part of the equation, given competition and price.

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