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Q&A: Adam Roman, Chief Operating Officer at Stellar Management

May 26 / 2016 

Stellar Management is having a busy 2016. In January, the multifamily owner-operator sold 123 Lafayette Street for $33.5 million, more than three times what was paid for it three years ago, and last month it refinanced a portfolio of residential buildings with a $35.6 million loan from Astoria Bank. Its portfolio currently includes roughly 11,000 multifamily units, 1.5 million square feet of office space and 1.2 million square feet of retail space, and the portfolio is only expanding.
Adam Roman, the chief operating officer and a principal at Stellar Management, sat down with Commercial Observer to tell us everything— from his military beginnings to what’s coming down the pipeline next.

Commercial Observer: How did you first get into the real estate business?
Mr. Roman:
I was in the Navy for six years, and during my last two years I got my real estate license. I received my MBA from Columbia Business School with concentrations in real estate and finance, before working in investment banking [at UBS]. From there, I went to Stellar. I started off gradually and then learned more about the business and became more exposed to the industry and just loved it.

Did you take any Navy principles with you to real estate?
Yes. The Navy and the military in general is all about management and leadership. A lot of those fundamental skills and lessons are applicable across a variety of industries, and certainly in real estate and in property management.

Tell us about Stellar. When did you join the team?
Stellar was founded by Larry Gluck over 30 years ago. I joined the company a little over eight years ago and from the beginning was involved in asset management, operations, financial reporting and working with our partners and investors. I would say our fundamental investment thesis is pretty consistent. We focus on multifamily assets and office buildings, both of which normally have a ground-floor retail component. Additionally, we’re generally long-term owners. We property manage and asset manage everything we own, so we’re vertically integrated in that regard.

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