Robert Futterman Fired From Company He Founded After Drug Bust, Per Reports
Retail brokerage legend Robert Futterman has been fired from his firm, according to multiple press reports.
Futterman, the former CEO of Robert K. Futterman & Associates, was terminated “for cause,” a BGC Partners spokesperson confirmed to the New York Post. BGC and Newmark bought RKF last year, and Futterman had been serving as the chair of Newmark RKF, the retail subsidiary of the publicly traded company.
Futterman was arrested in Texas for possession of a controlled substance and “marihuana” last month and was released on a $1,500 bond, according to the newspaper.
After the Texas incident, Futterman reportedly went to Los Angeles and interrupted a presentation from Newmark CEO Barry Gosin.
Futterman told the the Post Friday he does not a have a drug problem and was simply upset following the end of his 10-year relationship.
He also said his arrest was for medical marijuana. Futterman is not able to work in the real estate industry for 11 years because of the contract he signed when Newmark acquired RKF.
“I was falsely accused of using [illegal] drugs and alcohol, which I don’t use,” he told the Post. “I certainly do not plan on sitting back.”
RKF Chief Financial Officer Michael Flood has been tasked with running Newmark’s retail business in Futterman’s place, according to The Real Deal, citing a source.
“It’s sad; it’s a messy situation,” an unnamed NKF source told Commercial Observer when news of the arrest broke earlier this week.
Futterman founded RKF in 1998, and the brokerage went on to become a major retail leasing and investment sales brokerage in New York.
A year ago, after months of speculation, Newmark announced it had acquired RKF, and closed on the sale in September. Futterman stayed on as the chairman of what became known as Newmark RKF, with plans to spearhead the company’s retail expansion.
In an interview last May, Futterman told Bisnow he was selling his company to “stay competitive and to grow our business,” and that the offer — unlike others he had received — felt like the right fit.
"Just imagine, with Newmark's resources, where we can go,” he said at the time. “RKF has eight offices in North America and that’s with our only currency being our culture. Now we have Newmark’s currency along with our culture … We are planning to position [ourselves] for the future.”
Representatives for Newmark and RKF did not return requests for comment.
UPDATE, MAY 29, 4:20 P.M. ET: A previous version of this story included initial report that Futterman was arrested in Austin. The Austin Police Department has no records of Futterman's arrest. The Post has updated its story to indicate the arrest happened elsewhere in Texas. This story has been updated.
UPDATE, MAY 31, Noon ET: This story was updated to reflect a statement from Robert Futterman.