Executive Team



Ben Nehmadi – Founding Partner, Managing Principal

In 1983, led by founder and managing principal Ben Nehmadi, Republic Investment Company began acquiring rent-stabilized multifamily properties in the New York metropolitan area. Mr. Nehmadi became adept at buying under-managed rental buildings and adding value by making substantial capital improvements to the units and common areas, bringing construction, management and leasing activities in-house, and improving the overall financials.
Following years of success in New York City, Mr. Nehmadi began expanding the firms reach by acquiring properties in major gateway cities across the United States and Central America.

In response to demand for short-term, quickly accessible commercial real estate financing, Mr. Nehmadi founded Republic Funding LLC in 1993. Since inception, the entity has provided borrowers over 200 competitively-priced bridge loans for the purpose of acquiring, repositioning and renovating existing commercial real estate.
Mr. Nehmadi has overseen the growth of the firm to include over 40 active investment properties throughout the United States.



Darren J. Smith, Director of Operations

Darren J. Smith is the Director of Operations for all of Republic Investments portfolio of real assets. His primary role is to align corporate real estate strategies, and to design and implement all real estate policies, processes, and procedures. Mr. Smith is responsible for ensuring the financial success of owned and prospective projects by identifying potential areas of cost reductions and optimizing the effectiveness of capital expenditures. Prior to joining Republic Investment Co., Mr. Smith has held various executive roles in construction management, real estate development, and property management. Mr. Smith earned his degree in Marketing and Finance from St. Peters College.

Frank Zuo, Director

Mr. Zuo is a Managing Director at Republic Investment. He has been with Republic for over 10 years with a general focus on acquisitions, disposition, financial structuring, and asset management. He focuses on a broad array of debt and equity positions within distressed, value added and core plus strategies across sectors. His investment management expertise and insights provide Republic with the necessary tools to navigate and access the world of global capital markets.
Prior to joining Republic, Mr. Zuo worked at BNY Mellon and accumulated extensive portfolio management experience in structured finance.



Robert Hunter, CFA, Vice President – Investments

Robert Hunter serves as the firm’s Vice President of Investments. His primary responsibilities include evaluating the financial viability of potential acquisitions and assisting with strategic capital events including refinancing and disposition of current assets. Prior to joining Republic Investment Company, Robert worked for a prominent real estate development company and a public equity real estate research firm in Newport Beach. Robert earned his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Berkeley and most recently completed his MBA from Oxford University. Robert also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.

Janet Mira, Controller

Ms. Mira holds the Controller position at Republic Investment Company. She oversees the financial operations of all entities. Ms. Mira manages financial reports for all investment entities including commercial and multi-family properties under management, property level and RIC corporate financials. She is also involved in budget and variance analysis of all entities, holding responsibility for cash flow management of all funds and distributions. She is our point person for all financial inquiries regarding RIC’s various entities.

Ms. Mira joined the company in July 2016 with over a decade of specialized financial operations experienced in the real estate investment arena. Her career spanned enterprises such as Granite Peak Partners Inc., CIM Group, Brookfield Office Properties and Equity Office Properties.



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