Founded: January 2008
"George Bakes spoke to Townsend, DeMuth and Sterner at their offices located at 3 Forest Street in New Canaan and this is their story":
PATCH: Why did you decide to establish your business in New Canaan?
RC: Office rents in are far less expensive than New York City or Greenwich. We moved RC from Manhattan, where rents are at least twice if not three times more expensive! When our previous landlord in NYC needed his space back, we looked at NYC and Greenwich, but decided there wasn't sufficient synergy to warrant setting up shop in either of those locations.
It is very convenient for us to take the train into Manhattan from our office...not only can we walk to the train station, we walk back and forth from home to work. New Canaan is very well suited to local services, adequate parking for clients and accessibility to NYC...there is simply no better place to live and work than New Canaan...some of us have lived abroad (France), California, and New York City to mention a few places, but when we found New Canaan, we discovered there is no place like it...and, the three of us love to get out and to run at !
PATCH: What exactly does RC do?
RC: RC is an investment partnership, managed by Rich Townsend and Chris DeMuth (co-portfolio managers), and seeks to invest in mispriced securities with limited downsides and corporate events that unlock shareholder value.
According to Rob, “we invest in companies going through an event because we believe that is when our investment advantage is at its greatest.
Rich is actively involved in seeking investment opportunities that offer “value” in an extremely challenging economic environment, analyzing company filings and speaking directly with management.
Chris, on the other hand, is focused on researching the nuances of the corporate events themselves, for example, mergers and acquisitions, spinoffs, corporate restructurings, and numerous others and brings a wealth of experience from his days working for a hedge fund in NYC.”
Rob, who lives in NYC, is Director of Strategic Development, and his leadership role drives the administration and entire infrastructure on behalf of RC. Most importantly, Sterner stated "we invest with similar goals and objectives as our clients". Townsend further added "I am personally invested in RC", which shows his commitment to the RC business philosophy.
PATCH: What are some of the things that you would like New Canaan residents to know about your business, that they may not already know?
RC: Rich, along with his wife and three daughters, moved to New Canaan in 1986 and shortly thereafter relocated to France, returning in 1992. Chris DeMuth is married to Rich’s eldest daughter, Elizabeth, and lives in New Canaan with their two children. Even Rich’s youngest daughter, Amy Townsend (of Amy Ruth Designs in New Canaan) and her husband made the decision to start a business in New Canaan.
And, even though Rob Sterner is not part of the Townsend family, in reality, he is very much a big part of the RC family. Rob and Chris were friends in NYC and lived in the same building...and the rest is as they say, "history"...the team of three decided to set up shop on Forest Street (right above Sleepys).
Each of the principals are involved locally in , the , and the . "We certainly hope the town of New Canaan will get to know us better since we are right in town...we are very much invested in our community."
PATCH: What is your opinion/take on the current commercial real estate market in New Canaan?
RC: A bargain compared to NYC and Greenwich...it was important for us to be able to live and work in New Canaan and the best part is that we can be with our families when we choose to. Also, being in the heart of downtown, it affords us the opportunity to spend time with clients over lunch or dinner, with all of the wonderful culinary choices New Canaan has to offer.
PATCH: What direction would you like to see for the downtown? What other types of businesses would you like to see come to town?
RC: More office space for new businesses and "services" such as medical. A great addition to the community is G. Albert, which has become RC's official barber shop! We see Forest Street becoming completely pedestrian in the future, with parking being resituated to different parts of the town. And, as sad as it is, the truth is we will probably see less retail establishments because of online purchases through the internet. But, perhaps most importantly, to eliminate all of the vacant space in New Canaan...that really hurts the town...let's fill up all of those empty spaces and make New Canaan even more attractive for all.