A STORY OF OPPORTUNITY & PERSEVERANCE
At Okada & Company, we are constantly seeking ways to add value for our clients, finding rare opportunities for our partners, and growing our core businesses. Our story begins in 1967, when Naomi Okada made the choice to leave Japan in search of opportunity.
Coming To America | 1967
Naomi Okada immigrated to New York City from Osaka, Japan in 1967. With $200 to his name, he moved in with a friend in Flatbush, Brooklyn, and immediately began searching for work. His first two years in New York City were marked by exploring his new hometown, and working odd-jobs at retail stores throughout Manhattan.
THE EARLY YEARS | 1969
Seeking better opportunities and career prospects, Naomi answered an advertisement in the newspaper seeking commercial real estate agents at The Futterman Organization (not to be confused with RKF). He began working as a retail leasing agent. After three years of learning the ins and outs of real estate transactions, Naomi finally began to successfully close transactions on a consistent basis, and had his first prime retail transaction at 277 Park Avenue where he placed Shimbashi Restaurant. That same year, while visiting family in Tokyo, he met Marie Wada. The two reunited in New York, and were shortly married thereafter.
From Tokyo to NYC | 1974-1985
Over the next decade the interest of the Japanese in New York City continued to grow. Naomi was at the center of it all with the representation of hundreds of Japanese based corporation seeking to expand to the United States. Key clients included Takashimaya, Mistukoshi, Itochu Corporation, Panasonic, and Mitsubishi.
A New Beginning | 1985
By the summer of 1985, Naomi Okada was one of the most sought-after commercial real estate brokers in the United States. With the level of interest from Japan in New York City real estate, Naomi decided it was time to strike out on his own. He became founder and CEO of Okada International Corporation.
1986 -1995 | THE S&L CRISIS
During the famed Savings & Loans Crisis of the 1980's & 1990's, the market went into a tailspin and real estate with it. The Japanese interest in NYC real estate was at its peak when the market crashed. Initially, the Pacific based companies were uneffected, however, by the mid-1990's the companies had liquidity issues back in Japan, which required a swift exit of their non-core investments. Okada, initially hired to acquire investment properties, was hired again to sell them by the end of the crisis.
2002 | THE Next GENERATION
In 2002, under the mentorship of his father, Christopher N. Okada began working at Okada International and focused on tenant representation of small and medium sized companies as well as the sale of middle market buildings in Midtown Manhattan.
2006 | A PATH OF HIS OWN
In 2005, Naomi Okada revealed to his staff that he wished to go into semi-retirement and no longer wished to run Okada International. With the choice of taking over the company or striking out on his own, Chris decided to follow his vision and in January 2006 opened Okada & Company.
2008 -2010 | THE FINANCIAL CRISIS
During the financial crisis of 2008-2009, all regular real estate activity came to a halt. It was at this point that Chris made the decision to focus on distressed mortgages collateralized by buildings in Midtown Manhattan. Within those 2 years Chris consummated close to $700M in distressed debt sales.
2011 - PRESENT | ACQUISITIONS
By 2011, the market began recovering, but there were still large Inefficiencies in the marketplace. This is when Chris began acquiring core plus and value added properties throughout the region seeking to build a diverse but prime commercial real estate portfolio.