New locks, pink slips signal changing of guard at one Aspen real estate office |

New locks, pink slips signal changing of guard at one Aspen real estate office

Carolyn SackariasonThe Aspen Times Aspen CO, Colorado

ASPEN Fourteen people are out of jobs after Joshua & Co. acquired the real estate divisions of ResortQuests Coates, Reid and Waldron last Friday.Six support staff and five brokers in the Aspen office were terminated by ResortQuest after it sold Coates, Reid and Waldron to Joshua & Co. All seven brokers in Snowmass and two support staff were fired by ResortQuest on Friday. On Saturday, Joshua & Co. offered jobs to the top four brokers at the Snowmass office, and rehired the two office staffers there, said Gary Feldman, managing partner of Joshua & Co.The former Coates, Reid and Waldron brokers who accepted positions with Joshua & Co. are Rick Griffin, Steve LaMar, Greg Rulon and Robert Goldstein.But the brokers in Aspen, including Brent Waldron, Brian Hazen, Jonathan Feinberg, Mike Gerbaz and Bob Ritchie, plus their staff, were not offered positions with Joshua & Co. Combined, the brokers have hundreds of millions of dollars worth of active real estate listings.On Friday, the locks were changed at the Aspen office of Coates, Reid and Waldron, Feinberg said.ResortQuest didnt think this through and pulled a pretty hasty move, Feinberg said, adding an office assistant called him Friday afternoon informing him that locks were being changed. We were locked out of the office without any notice. … There are better ways to sell businesses.ResortQuest will continue operating its vacation rental division out of its Hyman Avenue office, located in the Aspen Athletic Club building.Chad Gilliland, ResortQuest senior vice president of operations, said brokers have been allowed access to the Aspen office to wrap up their affairs.Anytime there are acquisitions or sales of businesses, people are terminated and locks are changed, he said. Weve given brokers notice to wind down their operations. Were working with everybody.He added that some employees at the Aspen office were told that their positions would be eliminated at the end of the month as a belt-tightening measure. The others, who werent given notice of termination until Friday, were given severance packages, Gilliland said.Three brokers at the Snowmass office were not rehired, leaving their clients in limbo. Feldman said he is in discussions with one broker from the Snowmass office who will likely be invited to join the firm.The driving force behind the acquisition was so Joshua & Co. could gain a foothold in Snowmass, where the Aspen-based firm had no presence. This week, Coates, Reid and Waldron signs and logos were taken down and were being replaced with the Joshua & Co. insignia, Feldman said.We had nothing to do with the terminations. … Everybody was let go who was associated with Coates, Reid and Waldron, he said. We just bought the assets.Coates, Reid and Waldron was founded in 1952 by Kay and Roy Reid. Joshua & Co. was founded in 1992 and specializes in luxury real estate sales, rentals, ranch properties, and estate management and concierge services. It has two Aspen locations, and an office at Aspen Highlands.Feinberg said things are changing by the hour, and hes not sure what he will do.We were told that wed have 30 days to organize but it sounds like a much shorter fuse than that, he said. Were just trying to do whats in the best interest of our clients and to protect ourselves and our families.None of us are sleeping well but well land on our

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