Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Mark Pordes. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Hi Mark, thanks for joining us today. Innovation comes in all shapes, sizes and across all industries, so we’d love to hear about something you’ve done that you feel was particularly innovative.
Handling sales and marketing for various developers across the country. We engineered a formula on how to raise capital on Wallstreet and acquire all remaining condo units in class AAA branded signature projects. When a developer has had difficulty selling the remaining inventory. For example, our largest transaction as a bulk condo buyer was from MGM the seller at city center Las Vegas in a high rise development called Veer Towers. We were interviewed to take over sales of the remaining 427 unsold units. However we engineered a bulk condo buyout from MGM for all of the remaining 427 units.
In lieu of becoming the exclusive brokerage firm as the onsite sales and marketing team, we also became the owner. This was a 130 million dollar transaction that Pordesresidential in a JV partnership with a New York Hedge fund, Ladder Capital Finance concluded in 2013 and became the most successful selling high rise in Las Vegas. We have since used this platform for other condo bulk real estate transactions and have repeated this formula numerous times in Miami, Palm Beach, and the Caribbean.
Mark, love having you share your insights with us. Before we ask you more questions, maybe you can take a moment to introduce yourself to our readers who might have missed our earlier conversations?
My career spans more than two decades spent working independently, and with some of the country’s largest and most prominent residential condominium developers and institutional equity groups. Today, I oversee the sales and marketing of high-end residential projects in the U.S and abroad. The company was formed at the end of 2009 and has continued to be the leader in the luxury condominium and condo-hotel market.
Any stories or insights that might help us understand how you’ve built such a strong reputation?
With the combined expertise of the team, we have brought properties back to the market and have launched new project sales- reaching offshore and domestic buyers, attracting private and institutional investors, driving up values, and improving returns. Building a reputation is due to my proven track record in my unique ability to analyze an asset, set up the proper infrastructure, and organize the sales and marketing program for developers, to penetrate, reposition slower-selling existing projects, and launch new projects to sell in today’s changing marketplace both domestically and abroad.
Can you share one of your favorite marketing or sales stories?
One Bal Harbour hotel and residences, known as one of the trophy buildings in Bal Harbour, the newest building to be completed and delivered went into bankruptcy In 2009. There was a new owner who just purchased the One Bal Harbour hotel that consisted of 110 five star condo hotel units which the buyer purchased out of bankruptcy for cash. The owner held the property for a year unable to sell the remainder 43 condo hotel units due to not having the proper operator and business plan in place in addition to very difficult market conditions.
We reevaluated the opportunity where many others failed to see the potential. During this time in 2010 there was no commercial financing available for condo hotel units which made this a very risky investment; however, with our strong business plan and given the quality of the real estate, we knew we had a recipe for success. we decided to approach the owner in 2010 knowing the risk involved and we offered to purchase the remaining unsold 43 condo hotel units. We asked if he would resell all the inventory he couldn’t sell and provide us with seller financing for 24 months as a bulk condo hotel transaction. The deal was finalized in the first quarter of 2010,
Pordesresidential set up a sales operation out of the lobby of the hotel and created a handful of model units that did not go into the rental program. We started to remarket heavily to the Pordes broker network and the hotel guests in the building. We knew this transaction was a winner due to our expertise in the condo hotel business. We have successfully sold over 2,000 condo hotel units in various locations such as South Beach, Vegas, and in the Bahamas in the past 15 years in high profile branded condo hotel towers. Just to name a few, some of these include 495 units in the Residences at Atlantis in Nassu Bahamas, 995 units in The Fountainebleau/Sorrento and Tressor Towers in Miami Beach, 250 residential units and 150 condo hotel units in The Canyon Ranch Property Miami Beach, 149 units in The Hilton Bentley Beach in South Beach, and 150 units in MGM Signature Residences located in Las Vegas. With a strategic marketing plan, we were able to turn a 25 million dollar acquisition purchase price into a sell out of 58 million within 14 months.