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Newmark hopes to IPO in 2017, BGC CEO says

BGC Partners Inc. Chairman and CEO Howard Lutnick said he would like to see his company's commercial real estate advisory business, Newmark Knight Frank, execute an IPO in 2017.

Lutnick said the deal would likely come after the summer but before the end-of-the-year holidays if it is completed in 2017.

"Somewhere in September, October, November seems like the kind of time frame … we're looking at," Lutnick said June 7 during the Sandler O'Neill Brokerage & Exchange Conference.

Lutnick had previously noted that the business had filed confidentially for the IPO with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Lutnick said the lead underwriters on the IPO have not been selected, but he does know the plan for the company's name.

"When we spin it off, it will just be called Newmark," he said.

BGC purchased Newmark & Company Real Estate Inc. in 2011. The business division also includes Grubb & Ellis Co., which BGC purchased in 2012.

The IPO market could also have a comp for Newmark if private equity-backed real estate brokerage Cushman & Wakefield Inc. pursues an IPO. Published reports have noted that Cushman has been planning an IPO.

At the investor conference, Sandler analyst Richard Repetto asked Lutnick if a Cushman IPO would impact Newmark's plans. Lutnick responded by saying that Newmark is the fastest-growing commercial real estate business, and it should get at least the same multiple as any comparable company.