Global newsround

first_imgPhilip Whiteley reports on what’s happening in HR around the worldToyota settles two-week strike at Philippines subsidiaryCar manufacturer Toyota Philippines has restarted production following atwo-week strike. The company, which is a joint venture with Toyota MotorCorporation, the Philippines bank Metropolitan Bank and Japan’s Mitsui, backeddown over the sacking of 227 employees, which had provoked the stoppage. The dismissals were carried out in response to an earlier three-day stoppageand go-slow, following a failed campaign by workers for the recognition of anindependent union. Around 400 of Toyota Philippines’ 1,400 employees are union members. calls for limits to strike action in public sectorPresidentJacques Chirac expressed support for a law of “minimum publicservice” during strikes, after stoppages once more affected the train andbus system in France. “A strike is a fundamental right, guaranteed by theconstitution and no one questions that, but like all freedoms it has itslimits, in that it affects the freedom of others,” he said. A strike by train staff, as a protest against alleged plans forprivatisation, was followed by walk-outs by bus employees, in dispute over aGGT union bid for the right to retire at 55.www.figaro.frJob losses steady in Japan, but underlying rate is upJapan’s unemployment rate has fallen unexpectedly, according tothe latest figures released in early April, but the underlying rate remains onan upward trend as the Japanese economy continues to struggle. Labour market experts noted that the ratio of job offers toapplicants, which is a guide to business conditions, is deteriorating. The dipin unemployment from 4.9% of the workforce to 4.7% is seen as a laggingresponse to last year’s economic recovery, which had started to peter out asthe data were published.www.ft.comFrench judge orders Marks & Spencer to halt redundanciesA tribunalin France has ordered Marks & Spencer to suspend its closure of 18 shopspending full consultation with the employees affected. Unions in France accusedthe UK-based retailer of flouting national law by announcing redundancies.Closures followed strategic decisions made in London to concentrate on the UKmarket, but the judge ruled that this did not overrule French law.Meanwhile, the French food group Danone has also hit fiercecontroversy over plans to make redundancies, even though it is profitable. Thegroup wants to increase the efficiency of its biscuit factories and announcedin March that it was seeking to lose 570 posts out of 15,000 in France, whichhas triggered street protests by employees.www.figaro.frPfeffer attacks vitriolic e-mail threatening sackingsLeading human resources academic Jeffrey Pfeffer criticised avitriolic e-mail sent by a chief executive to his managers which caused a 22%slide in the share price. Cerner Corporation’s CEO Neal Patterson told managershe wanted to see the car park full by 7.30am each day and threatened sackings. “It is the corporate equivalent of whips and ropes andchains. It puts you at war with your employees and with your basic tendenciesin human nature,” says Pfeffer. Patterson has since apologised.Pfeffer is a trenchant critic of harsh or impersonal treatmentof employees, which causes damage to profitability as well as to employees’sense of well-being.www.nytimes.comFat cat pay “heralds drop in profits”There is a negative correlation between chief executive pay andcompany performance, according to a study by the US pressure group United for aFair Economy. Its research claims that companies headed by the top ten mosthighly paid executives have under-performed the average of Standard & Poortop 500 companies, as measured by return to shareholders.”The existing compensation packages provide short-termincentive, but not the climate for long-term sustainable businesssuccess,” says author Scott Klinger. “When Business Week releases itslist of the ten companies which had the highest paid CEOs in 2000, that wouldbe a good list of stocks to sell short.”www.lexis-nexis.comEU sets limits on free movement of workersThere is likely to be a five-year transition period inimplementing freedom of movement for employees within an enlarged EuropeanUnion, European Commissioners announced in April. The EU may take on as many as 12 new members from Eastern andCentral Europe in the next ten years, with Poland, Hungary and the CzechRepublic currently heading the queue. But according to Gunter Verheugen, the commissioner forenlargement, and Anna Diamantopoulou, the social affairs commissioner, citizensof these countries will not immediately have the right to work in existing EUmember countries.People from new member countries will face some limits on theirability to work in Western Europe for five years after accession to membershipof the entrant nations. Proposals to work will need the approval of EUgovernments. Citizens of the 15 current members of the union have fullfreedom of movement.www.faz.netInformal employment takes a grip on ArgentinaWorking in the informal economy hasreached a record high in Argentina. A study by independent group Equiscalculated that more than one-third of the adult population – 38% – are workingin the unofficial economy, depriving the state of millions in tax revenues. Thecountry has failed to benefit from recent years of global economic growth, andrates of both temporary work and official unemployment remain pact aims for better employment in SicilyEmployers, trade unions and universities in Sicily have reachedagreement on a series of policies and initiatives aimed at boosting employmentin the island. Like much of southern Italy, Sicily has high levels of activityin the informal economy, and also has organised crime. The new pact commits unions affiliated to four nationalconfederations, the local university, employers’ associations and statutorybodies including the Equal Opportunities Council to work together. They aim tocreate new companies, help introduce or reintroduce individuals into regularemployment and promote training in new technology.www.eiro.eurofound.ieAsia invests in training to combat skills shortage US-based data storage company EMC has launched its Asia PacificGlobal Training Center in Singapore to address the shortage of storagespecialists in the region. The firm has invested S$5m (£1.9m) in the centre,which is its second in the region (the first was in Japan). It aims for 2,800students by 2003.In a similar move, Singapore Network Services plans to investthe same amount over the next three years in a software development andtraining centre in India. The application service provider will build thecentre in the heart of India’s burgeoning software industry in Bangalore.www.CNET.comLufthansa pilots hold back on strike in 35% pay claimThe airlinepilots union in Germany has backed away from a strike at national carrierLufthansa as part of its pay dispute. The union is seeking a substantial payhike of 35%, which has been rejected by the company, saying that pilots earnless than in comparable airlines in other countries. The company’s original payoffer was just over one-tenth of the claim, at 3.6%.But the pilots’ association promised not to carry out strikesover the Easter period. It would have been the first strike of pilots in thehistory of Lufthansa.www.faz.netMinimum wage up 11% for UK employeesThe UK has announced an 11% rise in the minimum wage, from£3.60 an hour to £4.10, to take effect from October 2001. An estimated 1.3 million employees in the country will benefitfrom the increase, which will be followed by a further ten pence rise a yearlater, if economic circumstances permit. It is the first increase in the pay floor since it wasintroduced in 1998, the first time in its history that the UK has had a minimumwage.www.eiro.eurofound.ieGraduate hiring rate stays high despite downturnNorth American companies are maintaining a high rate ofrecruitment from universities, despite corporate lay-offs and talk of apossible recession. A survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employersof the US found recruiters are evenly split between those planning to stick tooriginal college hiring goals and those scaling back due to the economicslowdown. An “extraordinary” job market for graduates in recent yearshas become merely “good”, says a report by the Society for HumanResource Previous Article Next Article Global newsroundOn 1 Jun 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Bernard Hodes campaign draws pharmacists to Tesco

first_imgResearch played a key part in a successful recruitment campaign for TescoPharmacy by resourcing specialist Bernard Hodes Group. The advertising campaign scooped three trophies at this year’s RecruitmentAdvertising Awards and has increased job applications while raising TescoPharmacy’s profile in a tough recruitment market. It is the latest in a series of campaigns which began in 1996 and which havewon nine RAD or CIPD awards and nominations for Tesco and Bernard Hodes Group. The research into pharmacists’ career choices and their perceptions of Tescoas an employer revealed concerns that they would not be able to provide the samelevel of customer service as a high street pharmacy. “Our response was to develop an approach that would dispel the mythsand sell the advantages – such as funded training, support and flexible hours,” said Neil Atkinson, a communications consultant who worked on thecampaign at Bernard Hodes. Carol Trower, Tesco Pharmacy’s recruitment and training manager, said thestrategy is unique. “It’s a particularly tough market where creativity andoriginality are the best ways of getting your message across.” Bernard Hodes campaign draws pharmacists to TescoOn 5 Feb 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

Majority of employees blame work for illness

first_img Comments are closed. Majority of employees blame work for illnessOn 19 Feb 2002 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Seven out of 10 employees believe work has made them ill, according to a newstudy. The research by the Work Life Balance Centre and Keele University showsalmost nine out of 10 employees suffer general stress generally. The mostcommon symptoms of this are irritability, fatigue, a lack of concentration andsleeplessness. More than four out of 10 staff said they go to work even when they feel illwhile one in five pretend to be ill to take a day off. Almost a third said work leaves them too tired for sex. Staff in the NorthWest and North East are most badly affected, with four out of 10 workers beingtoo tired to perform in the bedroom. More staff, better communication between staff and management, lessmanagement bullying and better workload planning are all cited by the 306 staffsurveyed as potential solutions to stress. Despite the problems, over half of those questioned said they enjoy thechallenge of their jobs. Julie Hurst, director of the Work Life Balance Centre, said that ifemployers ignore the work-life balance agenda, they are limiting theproductivity of their company. She said: “People do enjoy their jobs, but resent the demands it makeson their private lives. Unless employers help address the negatives, they aremissing out on a great deal of goodwill and enthusiasm that could ultimatelyhelp make the company more successful.” Dr Wendy Richards, lecturer in industrial relations at Keele University,said a lack of work-life balance policies in UK industry is costing billions. She said: “It is important we tackle the area of work-life balance ashigh levels of illness are costing British industry billions of pounds eachyear. Illness levels seem to be rising which means we could face even moreproblems in the future.” By Paul Nelson Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more


first_img Comments are closed. SoulOn 1 May 2002 in Personnel Today Business has a habit of taking words and re-engineering them to suit its own needs. So it is with “guru”. Test this out by asking a colleague to name two gurus who have made an impact on the business world. The odds are that they will come out with Peter Drucker, Charles Handy, Tom Peters or, if they are feeling patriotic, Sir John Harvey-Jones. You’ll cast around in vain for a mention of the Baghwan.But recent developments suggest all that might be about to change. A growing number of unashamedly spiritual philosophers – real gurus, if you like – are making inroads into the business world.When an organisation as traditionalist as the Chartered Institute Personnel and Development in Britain can make room at its conferences to discuss the impact of shamanic techniques on morale and performance, you know the issue has become a significant one.What is at the root of this growing quest for spirituality in the workplace?No doubt it owes much of its momentum to Western society’s wider adoption of Eastern meditation and self-improvement techniques.As the boundaries between home and working life blur, an overspill of some kind is inevitable. As many US organisations demonstrated in the 20th century, companies can often flourish on a common set of ethics frequently grounded on a shared system of spiritual belief.But the real problem with gurus will always lie in sorting the wheat from the chaff. No-one needs reminding that this is an area in which charlatans flourish.In recent years, some decidedly questionable organisations have specifically targeted the corporate world in their recruitment campaigns. They have managed to capitalise on the blurred ground between management “self-improvement” techniques and something more sinister.Here, we offer a potted guide to some of the more obviously benevolent gurus that have emerged in recent years. Enjoy the karma. Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

TMP Worldwide Award for innovation in recruitment and retention

first_imgThis award recognises effective approaches to selection, recruitment andretention of employees. The judge has looked for successful approaches todeveloping and motivating staff and for innovative ways of  attracting the right applicants to theorganisation. New methods of recruitment, measuring and assessing capabilityand performance, career management, succession planning and competency testinghave all been relevant to this category. The judge has also looked for evidenceof competitive advantage gained.Category JudgePeter Reilly is an associate director of the Institute of EmploymentStudies, responsible for HR research and consultancy. He leads the Institute’sreward and performance management work programme, and is a major contributor toits HR planning and resourcing work. Prior to joining IES, Reilly had a 16-yearcareer with Shell Oil, where he held various HR posts in the UK and abroad GAPRecruitment and training teamAbout the company Gap Inc is an international retailer offering clothing, accessories andpersonal care products for men, women, children and babies. It has 165,000staff working in 4,200 stores in the UK, US, Canada, France, Japan and Germany The challenge To develop and execute a recruitment tool that reflects the Gap brand andstore requirements, and links the customer brand to the employee brand What the company did – Replaced competency-based interviews with shop-floor assessments – Introduced awareness exercises to test candidates’ appreciation of theretail environment – Self-motivation exercise to assess personal drive and passion for retail – Communication test to find the best role for the staff member – Tests to find natural ability and passion for selling Benefits and achievements – Retention increased from 32 per cent to 80 per cent – Productivity increased to between 25 and 180 per cent above the storeaverage – 60 per cent of managers recruited from sales associates in 2001 Peter Reilly says: “The company has developed an innovative approach tosales associate recruitment. It is striking in the way that it uses its ownexperienced sales associates to assess candidates’ aptitude for retail work andsuitability for the GAP environment. It has led to better retention andproductivity among the recruiters and the recruited.” The teamNo. in team 23 in HR team, 6 in recruitment and training teamStaff responsible for 5,600 Steve Finlan Vice-president HR EuropeVanessa Evans Recruitment and training managerSarah Larner Recruitment officerYvette Winteringham Recruitment officerTina Earnshaw Training officerKaren Moseley Training officerMerseyside Fire ServiceHR departmentAbout the company Merseyside Fire Service has 26 fire stations in a geographical area thatstretches from the boundaries of Cheshire to Southport and St Helens. More than1.4 million people live within this area The challenge To meet Home Office targets for the recruitment of ethnic minority andfemale firefighters into the UK Fire Service What the company did – Analysed other recruitment campaigns to devise appropriate strategy – Appointed community firefighters to build contacts in local ethniccommunities – Created a working party of firefighters, ethnic minorities and femaleemployees – Held awareness days to give people an idea of the entry standards required– Advertised through agency who specialise in attracting women and ethnicminorities Benefits and achievements – A course of 20 new trainees started in April 2002, of which there werethree females and six from minority groups. This represents a 100 per centincrease in workforce representation of both groups – Four further females and one ethnic minority male were due to take theirplace on the second trainee course in August Peter Reilly says: “This is an imaginative attempt to improve thediversity of the Fire Service’s workforce. Especially noteworthy, has been thelinks it has made with the community and the pre-recruitment training programmeoffered to academically disadvantaged groups. Its targeted advertising broughtin a sub-stantial number of applicants and led to their best ever recruitmentoutcomes.” The teamNo. in team 39 in HR team, 7 in recruitment teamStaff responsible for 1,700Paul Gallagher Head of People ServicesNick Mernock Personnel managerColin Murphy Recruit course managerKaren Holmes Clerical officerTony Williams Equal opportunities officerRichard Farrall Personnel officerCarl Jones ClerkVenturaHR recruitmentAbout the company Ventura provides outsourced customer contact centre solutions for firms likeO2, Woolwich Building Society, Amerada, Kingfisher Group, Northern Rock andFreeserve. It has more than 30 years’ experience and is based in Leeds andRotherham The challenge To raise awareness of Ventura and create a positive image of the contactcentre industry in the region, and widen the catchment area. Also, to breakdown the transport barrier to recruitment and improve staff retention What the company did – Formed cross-functional team with PR, operations, marketing and the printand fulfilment team – Established links with local community action group and employmentservices – Direct mail campaign to 60,000 households – Sponsored local transport initiatives – Introduced transport service for staff, mirroring key shift patterns Benefits and achievements – 464 employees recruited within two months – Average recruitment costs of £178 per head – 40 per cent increase in replies from people covered by the transport initiative– Filled 3,500 jobs regionally Peter Reilly says: “Recruitment and retention is always difficult inthe contact centre business. Ventura approached its problems in a very focusedway. Through community links, direct mailing and a promotional video, thecompany accessed a wide population in a successful recruitment campaign.Addressing transport problems has helped both recruitment and retention.” The teamNo. in team 42 in HR team, 3 in recruitment and training teamStaff responsible for 3,510 Jo Sweeting Recruitment managerYvonne Murphy Recruitment team leaderEmma Audsley Recruitment administratorBob Johnson Recruitment administratorAnne Logden Recruitment administratorClaire Medlam Recruitment administratorThe sponsorsWithoffices in 25 countries, TMP Worldwide recruits a very wide range of people andhas an in-depth understanding of global companies. With more than 7,000employees, TMP Worldwide understands local markets. The organisation offers acomprehensive package of services and products for the HR professional. Allunder one roof.  Learn more at Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article TMP Worldwide Award for innovation in recruitment and retentionOn 29 Oct 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more


first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. This week’s guruSickie fibbers should be ashamedGuru is a big fan of our weekly barometer surveys on page three. Thefindings help give him an invaluable insight into what the profession thinksabout a particular topical news issue. However, he has to take disciples to account over the voting results of thebarometer that asked: Have you ever taken a hangover-induced sickie? Of the 154people who voted, 68 per cent claimed they have never taken time off followinga night out on the tiles. Frankly, Guru doesn’t believe you. How about those casual jobs you did as astudent? What about the seasonal blow out in the run-up to Christmas? Leavingdos? Birthdays? Guru realises that as responsible HR professionals, disciples must set anexample for the rest of the malingering workforce. But really, how can you lookat yourselves in the mirror without blushing? As the saying goes, there are lies, damn lies and statistics. Not at the expense of my lavish lifestyle Guru has been deeply worried about the increase of employment legislationfrom Europe that will damage the flexibility of the UK’s labour force. Both the Agency Workers’ Directive and the draft European constitution couldhave significant implications for UK employers. However, there is one issue where Guru joins hands with his brothers fromEurope: expenses. Members of the European Parliament have managed to derailattempts to reform the chamber’s famously lavish expenses regime. Apparently, reformers were trying to introduce an expenses system based onactual cost and backed up by receipts. What a ridiculous concept! Guru’s whole lifestyle would be in jeopardy if itcaught on. Chocoholics wanted to fill teaching posts Part of an effective recruitment campaign is about convincing potentialapplicants that their basic employment needs will be met on a day-to-day basis.Guru was very impressed to see Hempstead Infants School in Kent, take thisapproach to its logical and most primal conclusion by offering in itsrecruitment adverts an unlimited supply of chocolate, as well as careerdevelopment help and staff counselling. While other schools in the area not offering chocolate still have 47unfilled posts, Hempstead has been deluged with applications. Guru also has basic needs. Following a bit of research of his own, he hasfound that chocolate releases the same endorphins as those released duringsexual encounters. So, armed with a Milky Bar, Guru is off to do some‘recruiting’ of his own. Have chocolate, will travel (don’t tell Mrs Guru)… Guru checks out if love is on the menu …but perhaps Mrs Guru need not fear Guru’s philandering. A new study by Yahoo says that more than four in 10 men and women admittedworking more than 40 hours a week, leaving them too busy to find time for love.Never deterred, Guru delved deeper (so to speak). The survey revealed that athird of singletons questioned had tried online dating, but traditionalmethods, such as meeting in a pleasant restaurant for a meal, are still thefavourite. Thus Guru has hedged his bets and taken his electronic love locater (or‘laptop’ if you’d rather) to the finest table at the Savoy Grill. If the surveyis correct, there should be no better way to get some fine rump (steak). GuruOn 17 Jun 2003 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

Pilots of the future: a short story

first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. One morning in early September, Digby rushed into a radio studio to shakehis dewlaps at the trade unions. He said: “Barriers to progress…yesterday’s battles… grrr… wintrydiscontentdeadunburiedclosedshop… grrr…co-operationnotconfrontationreformnodillydally…CHANGENOTHAPPENINGQUICKLYENOUGH.” The annual extravaganza of clichés otherwise known as conference season islike the Olympics – it needs someone to light the torch and begin thefestivities, and it was important to Digby’s self-esteem to be that someone. In the age of media and brands, being seen to slot home the right message atthe right time into the nation’s half-awake sensoria was far more importantthan the substance of what you say. During the hot, lazy summer, he had often looked out from his Centrepointeyrie and reflected that British business was like a fierce and powerfulmastiff, fangs bared, taut sinews rippling, howling at the scent of carrion,but boxed in everywhere by meddling bureaucrats and nannying unions determinedto cage and sedate this awesome creature. Kennelman Digby must set the beastfree. He left the studio with high hopes – marred only by the faintrecollection that he may have promised Brendan he could start everything offthis year. Ah well, too bad. “Soon, my beauty,” he whispered tohimself. “Soon.” Fortunately, his carefully confected rage had not fallen on fallow ground.Among the half-awake masses were some journalists, who knew there are only sixpossible stories in conference season: (1) brothers berate Blair, (2) Blairstands up to brothers, (3) bosses lay into brothers, (4) brothers hit out atbosses, (5) bosses berate Blair, (6) change not happening quickly enough claimbosses/brothers/Blair. With that tenacity, ingenuity, and quick thinking under pressure, for whichBritish journalism is so justly famous, they swiftly realised they were ontosomething big. This was a bit of story 3 crossed with a little 6, a 3+6 in thejargon – something which hadn’t been seen for a full 12 months. Stopping onlyto cut and paste what they had written last year, they set to work. “Damn,” cursed Brendan, with a vehemence unusual among votaries ofpartnership. Round the table in a cubist eyesore in Fitzrovia sat the 50 oddsets of jowls of the General Council, some scowling the scowl of awkwardness,others looking more like victims of domestic abuse, but all watching the newman for a lead. That morning, Brendan’s phone had not stopped ringing. The journalists hadtold him Digby had just come up with a 3+6 story and he was going to have todeliver a 4, or maybe a 1+4, in time for the evening news – if things weregoing to really get going ahead of his Brighton conference. “I was sure Digby promised I could start it off this year,”reflected Brendan mildly. Immediately, the good brethren sensed the crisis and began pitching in. Howabout a mass picket of Centrepoint, they offered. A national “It’s OurTurn, Digby” Campaign. They could possibly appeal to the EuropeanCommission to begin work on a new Autumn Conference Fair Play directive. Brendan gently patted the air to silence them. “Please, colleagues, Imust think,” he said, in the manner of a yogi poised for prayer. That afternoon, he pondered his dilemmas. Brighton – his first as GS – waslooming, all minibars, backslapping and oily vol-au-vents. What he needed inhis keynote speech was a twin strategy that would really bring home that it washis turn to start and how unfair Digby was being, but that would also play wellwith the crack troops of organised labour. What should he do? He could tack to the left, invoke the spirit of Tolpuddle, of Annie Besant,of Clem, Nye and the boys, quote a line from The Red Flag – something about”cringing before the rich man’s frown” always went down well withtrots and tankies, though less so among anyone with power. Or maybe play to thecentre, calling up the Webbs, throw in a Shavian reference, a bit of Beveridge,a line or two of Things Can Only Get Better, and go on about how the Labourmovement was like a family, with tiffs and quarrels and rows over taking toolong in the bathroom and who could use the phone, but in which everyone lovedeach other really and needed to listen to what each other was saying withrespect. “Fairness” was a good word, a modern word, not too muchbaggage. Whenever unions laid claim to the great British sense of fair play, italways got Digby very cross and that – along with “lots and lots ofrights” – was among the top priorities of conference season. Alternatively, an idea flitted across his mind, he could break the mould andsay something that really engaged with the nature of working life. It wasoccasionally muttered in some quarters that conference season was becoming anincreasingly daft, choreographed pillow-fight involving gormless institutions,the Government and the media, which neither has any bearing on the massexperience of work, nor gives the impression of any serious thought takingplace. “Nah,” he reflected, “if it ain’t broke, why fix it?” Heswiftly phoned his press flunkies and said with new assurance: “Tell themit’s story 4+6.” That evening, Brendan rushed into a radio studio and said: “Grr…fatfailurecatrewards… longsweatshophoursnofunrightsatwork…Blairbusinesspoodleyapyap…grr… grr… actionnotwords… somesuccessminimumwageunionrecognition, butCHANGE NOTHAPPENINGQUICKLYENOUGH!” Pilots of the future: a short storyOn 16 Sep 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

7 Manhattan hotels head to auction block

first_imgEmail Address* Full Name* Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink Mack Real Estate Credit Strategies issued the loan in 2018, according to the mezzanine loan agreement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.Hersha and Cindat did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Mack Real Estate declined to comment.The seven hotels are located in Times Square, Chelsea, Herald Square and the Financial District operating under the Holiday Inn, Hampton Inn and Candlewood Suites brands. The properties are at 116 West 31st Street, 108 West 24th Street, 337 West 39th Street, 339 West 39th Street, 343 West 39th Street, 51 Nassau Street and 126 Water Street.The portfolio had been fully owned by Hersha Hospitality Trust until 2016, when the Philadelphia-based trust sold a 70 percent majority interest to Chinese investment firm Cindat Capital Management in a deal worth $571.4 million, The Real Deal reported.In 2018, the joint venture of Hersha and Cindat refinanced loans for the portfolio, with a new $300 million mortgage loan and the $85 million of mezzanine financing.Hodges Ward Elliott is managing the UCC auction on behalf of Mack Real Estate.Contact Akiko Matsuda Message*center_img Cindat Capital Management CEO Greg Peng and Hersha Hospitality Trust CEO Jay Shah with 51 Nassau Street (Google Maps)Seven Manhattan hotels are hitting the auction block.The portfolio, owned by a joint venture between Hersha Hospitality Trust and Chinese investment firm Cindat Capital Management, is scheduled to be auctioned on Jan. 21 as a result of the owner’s default on an $85 million mezzanine loan, according to a public notice.Read moreLeisure and hospitality lost 500K jobs in DecemberHere are the markets where hotels are hurting the mostBusiness at city hotels down a stunning 90% Share via Shortlink TagsCommercial Real EstateDistressFinancial DistrictHotelsmidtown manhattanReal Estate Financelast_img read more

Broker fee ban an “error,” court rules

first_img Message* Full Name* Tags breakingReal Estate and PoliticsRental MarketResidential BrokerageResidential Real Estate Email Address* BHS CEO Bess Freedman, Sotheby’s CEO Philip White, REBNY head James Whelan, Douglas Elliman executive chairman Howard Lorber and Corcoran CEO Pamela Liebman (Getty, iStock)UPDATED April 12, 2021, 11:28 a.m.: An Albany judge sided with the real estate industry Friday, declaring New York state regulators’ attempt to ban tenants from paying landlords’ broker fees an “error of law.”The decision comes more than a year after the Department of State issued guidance banning the practice. That guidance offered regulators’ interpretation of the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act, which became law in June 2019.In response, prominent real estate trade groups and residential brokerages filed for a temporary injunction against state regulators and sought to overturn the guidance, which they said wreaked “havoc and confusion” on agents and renters.After lengthy delays and several postponed hearings, Albany Supreme Court Judge Susan Kushner issued her decision on Friday.ADVERTISEMENT“The guidance was issued in error of law and represents an unlawful intrusion upon the power of the Legislature and constitutes an abuse of discretion,” Kushner wrote in her court order.Read moreRental listing prices jump on hundreds of apartments during broker fee ban: reportFallout from broker fee ban throws industry into chaosEnd of tenant-pays broker fees is “death knell” that will cost jobs and up rents, industry says Share via Shortlink In addition to dismissing state regulators’ guidance, the court order bans the DOS from applying or enforcing any rule that would prevent a real estate licensee from receiving payment from a prospective tenant for “bringing about the meeting of the minds” between a landlord and tenant. It also permanently prevents state regulators from imposing any disciplinary action against licensees who do collect broker fees from tenants.Broker fees in New York City are typically about 15 percent of the annual rent, which when combined with first’s month rent and a security deposit can mean tenants must come up with a five-figure sum just to move in. The broker fee for a Manhattan apartment asking the borough’s median rent of nearly $3,100 would be about $5,580.While counterintuitive for those who have never rented in the city, it’s common for a renter to pay the broker fee for the landlord’s agent whether or not that agent did any work on the tenant’s behalf. Before the pandemic, the city’s rental market was so notoriously tight that if a tenant refused to pay the broker fee, landlords and their agents often had plenty of other options. (That dynamic has since changed as vacancies across the city skyrocketed and listings touting no broker fee have proliferated.)The DOS guidance last year shook the real estate industry. Many called it a “death knell” that would jeopardize rental firms and agents’ businesses .Meanwhile, housing advocates and many New Yorkers applauded the move.“Fees, historically, just defined who had access to the rental market and who didn’t,” Paulette Soltani, political director at the activist group VOCAL New York, said at the time. “This is just going to allow people to equally be able to find housing and not have to pay these exorbitant fees to get access.”Though state Sen. Julia Salazar did not voice outright support of regulators, when asked last year whether the guidance was in line with the spirit of the 2019 rent laws, she said “our intent is to eliminate barriers that currently prevent low-income and vulnerable people from obtaining housing.”Within days of regulators’ guidance being issued, the real estate industry headed to court. The Real Estate Board of New York and the New York State Association of Realtors filed for the injunction, along with brokerages Corcoran Group, Douglas Elliman, Bond New York, Brown Harris Stevens, Sotheby’s International Realty, Bohemia Realty Group, R New York, Kian Realty NYC, Level Group, City Connections and Regina Wierbowski Real Estate.The injunction was granted and broker fees were back, though the pandemic dealt a swift blow to market activity soon after. Many landlords began forgoing the practice of charging tenants broker fees in order to fill apartments as the city emptied out.Now, the industry is extolling its ability to charge the broker fee without state regulators stopping them.“This decision ensures that thousands of hardworking, honest real estate agents across New York state can earn commissions without fear of unwarranted discipline by the Department of State based on its erroneous interpretation of the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act,” said REBNY president James Whelan in a statement.But the industry’s celebration may be premature: The DOS could appeal Friday’s decision. It’s also possible state lawmakers could introduce legislation that explicitly bans the practice of forcing tenants to pay broker commissions.The judge’s decision deferred to lawmakers and was based on the fact the 2019 rent law made no reference to “broker’s commissions” and did not specifically mention real estate agents.“Where the term is intentionally included in one section of the Act and omitted in another, it is further evidence that the Legislature must have intended to omit it,” Kushner wrote.In a statement issued on Monday, a spokesperson said the DOS was “reviewing the Judge’s order and contemplating next steps.”Contact Erin Hudson Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlinklast_img read more

Serious buyers only: The 10 priciest new Hamptons listings

first_img Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink Full Name* Share via Shortlink For a mere $175 million, 700 Meadow Lane can be yours.Never has there been a better time to list a Hamptons estate. The pandemic supercharged interest in vacation homes as well as primary residences, and with virtually anyplace with broadband now qualifying as a workplace, East End mansions can now be both.Add to that exceedingly low inventory and some very swollen bank accounts, thanks to Wall Street’s robust recovery, and the potential exists for seemingly inflated asking prices to be met, if not exceeded. That said, aspirational pricing is still a hazard for home shoppers and real estate agents alike.Here are the 10 highest-priced listings to hit the Hamptons market this year, not including a Bridgehampton estate asking $52 million that only became available this week, after this ranking was compiled.1. Mylestone at Meadow Lane | $175 millionFormer advertising executive Marcia Riklis’ waterfront home at 700 Meadow Lane was listed in January for more than twice what Ken Griffin paid for a slightly smaller property next door. Riklis’ mansion spans 15,521 square feet and has 11 bedrooms, 12 bathrooms and four half-bathrooms. A modern Tudor-style, it sits on eight acres and features an attached caretaker’s cottage, basketball and tennis courts and outdoor entertaining spaces. Bespoke Real Estate has the listing.2. 90 & 100 Briar Patch | $95 millionThis 11-acre East Hampton estate was put on the market in February. Its centerpiece is a 13,800-square-foot mansion with 10 bedrooms, 12 bathrooms and three half-bathrooms. The listing also includes a guest house, pool cabana and two garages. The home was built in 1931 by Arthur C. Jackson, who also prepared plans for the New York Public Library and Lasata, the childhood summer home of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Bespoke Real Estate has the listing.3. 63 Duck Pond Lane | $35 millionThe flagship property of homebuilder Hamptons Luxury Estates went on the market in April. The 16,000-square-foot Southampton home sits on two acres and has nine bedrooms and 12 bathrooms. Designed in part by Alexander Gorlin and Bennett Leifer, it has a sunken tennis court, an indoor spa with an infinity jacuzzi and dry sauna. The listing is offered directly by Hamptons Luxury Estates, said its president, Yale Fishman.4. 612 Halsey Lane | $35 millionThis Bridgehampton mansion, listed in March, has 10 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms and five half baths. The home is about 17,000 square feet, sits on 11.5 acres and has a library, home theater and recreational space including a two-lane bowling alley, virtual golf and rock-climbing wall. Douglas Elliman’s Erica Grossman has the listing. The home first hit the market in June 2019 for nearly $40 million, according to Out East. It has been on and off the market since then, but had its first and only price chop when it was relisted in March.5. 359 Meadow Lane | $32 millionThis Southampton estate was listed by Corcoran in January. The 6,188-square-foot home sits on 5.6 acres and has five bedrooms, five bathrooms and one half-bathroom. Features include a guest house, tennis court and heated pool. Tim Davis and Thomas Davis are the brokers. In 2019, Bespoke Real Estate marketed the property paired with a mansion at 660 Halsey Neck Lane for $72.5 million.6. 569 Ox Pasture Road | $32 millionThis Southampton property went on the market in March. Built in 1970, the single-family home spans 9,333 square feet and includes nine bedrooms, seven bathrooms and two half baths. The 4.6-acre property features a tennis court, three-car garage, powder room and greenhouse. There’s also three spaces for entertaining, a sauna deck and a solarium with views of the water. Douglas Elliman’s Erica Grossman has the listing. The property was last sold in 2008 for $11.7 million.7. 25 Quimby Lane | $28.5 millionCondé Nast power couple Christopher Mitchell and Pilar Guzmán listed their home in March. The 12,000-square-foot Bridgehampton home sits on 2.3 acres and features 10 bedrooms and 11 full bathrooms. Amenities include a spa, steam room, wine room, fitness room and home theater. Sotheby’s International Realty brokers Beate Moore and Frank Newbold have the listing. Mitchell and Guzmán purchased the home in 2019 for $7.1 million and made extensive renovations.8. 176 Deforest Road | $28.5 millionLegendary talk show host Dick Cavett’s 19th century Montauk home is back on the market. It was re-listed in April for $4,385 per square foot. The 6,500-square-foot home has six bedrooms, four bathrooms and one half bath. The property is nearly 20 acres surrounded by almost 200 acres of preserve. Several price chops since it was listed in 2018 brought the price down from $62 million to less than $28 million in March, but that price went up with the most recent listing. Chris Coleman of Compass is the listing agent.9. 30 & 52 The Crossways & Georgica Road | $25 millionDesigned by architect John Custis Lawrence, the 14,000-square-foot, three-story home in East Hampton Village was listed in February. The price works out to $1,786 per square foot. It sits on two acres and features 11 bedrooms, eight bathrooms and three half bathrooms. Highlights of the property, known as Onadune, include stained glass windows, a 20-by-50 foot heated pool and a library that philanthropist John Rockefeller often escaped to in the summertime. Compass’ Scott Strough and Ed Petrie are the listing agents.10. 1950 Meadow Lane | $25 millionThis Southampton mansion hit the market in February, according to Miller Samuel. Built in 1983, it spans 8,293 square feet and sits on 3.4 acres. The home has 11 bedrooms, 11 bathrooms and two half bathrooms across three levels. Ocean views abound, and the property features a private boardwalk and terrace. Mark Baron of Saunders & Associates has the listing.Contact Cordilia James bridgehamptonEast HamptonHamptons Listingshamptons-weeklylong islandluxury marketmontaukSouthamptonThe Hamptonscenter_img Message* Email Address* Tagslast_img read more