Cantor Fitzgerald appoints head for new RE group

The financial services firm has hired Rodney Montag as executive managing director to lead Cantor Real Estate alongside Andrew Stark. The group plans to launch a real estate opportunity fund targeting distressed land holdings and development projects.

Financial services firm Cantor Fitzgerald has appointed former WCI Communities executive Rodney Montag as joint executive managing director of its newly formed real estate group.

Montag will work alongside Andrew Stark in building the platform, including a real estate opportunity fund, targeting distressed real estate investment loans and development projects.

Montag was previously vice president of acquisitions at master-planning development company WCI Communities, where he worked with Stark for more than 10 years.

Cantor Real Estate, launched last month, intends to take advantage of the current market dislocation, according to Cantor’s chairman and chief executive Howard Lutnick, who said at the time there were “significant opportunities” for value-add investments and developments. 

In a statement today, Lutnick added that reuniting Montag and Stark, who was former president of WCI Communities’ Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, was a “tactical” decision in order to take advantage of investment returns currently being seen in distressed assets.

Montag said the credit crisis had forced many residential and commercial developers and owners to “shift their focus to capital preservation and are now seeking liquidity.” He argued Cantor would concentrate on the niche market of “acquiring and restructuring construction debt and redeveloping projects.”

The news comes as Cantor announced plans to open an office in Tel Aviv, Israel offering cash equity, foreign exchange cash and derivatives, futures and options, structured products and private placements.