Business Profile: Ayall Schanzer

Sizing up the market with Friedland Realty Advisor’s CEO.

It’s a vast understatement when Ayall Schanzer says, “I have followed a different path to commercial real estate than most.” (For more on his career path, see “Unlawful” on page 14.) The 44-year-old Scarsdale resident began his career in Manhattan as a prosecutor working on organized crime narcotics cases, then served as a corporate lawyer in the financial services industry, took a whirl as an entrepreneur, and most recently worked as a turnaround consultant.

As of July 2014, Schanzer is CEO of Friedland Realty Advisors, formerly NAI Friedland, a 44-year-old commercial real estate firm located in Yonkers. He met owner Bob Friedland last year through a mutual friend and something clicked between them. “Bob was looking for someone to build on his company’s experience and take the firm to a new level,” Schanzer says. “He hired me to raise the company’s profile and expand its geographic footprint.” 

 Schanzer jumped at the opportunity. “The first thing that attracted me was the people,” he explains. “Friedland has a deep pool of talent. I also saw the opportunity to modernize some of the methodologies and create exponential growth by aligning processes and technology.”

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It didn’t take Schanzer long to size up the challenges of the market. While landlords decry a dearth of tenants for an oversupply of office space in Westchester, he says, the opposite holds true for investors looking for properties to buy. “If you’re in the industrial sector, for example, you can’t find property.” He adds that building owners who have sold and need to redeploy their capital in 1031 exchanges (essentially rolling over their capital gain into another property to delay payment of taxes) have a particularly difficult time finding suitable properties in the county right now.

“Our reputation has been that we get the job done,” he says. “My goal is to build on that and create a culture that breeds trust, confidence, and collaboration among the brokers.” 

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