New York City-based Cantor Fitzgerald L.P. today launched a real estate investment fund–dubbed Cantor Real Estate L.L.C.–and appointed Andrew Stark as executive managing director. Stark will direct the creation of a real estate opportunity fund that focuses on investments in various real estate sectors including dislocated assets. While no official goal has been set for fundraising, a Cantor spokesperson said the company hopes to raise between $300 to $350 million and will use leverage of about 50 percent. “Our attention is keenly focused on development and redevelopment opportunities that have strong underlying fundamentals, but are caught up in the credit crunch and inertia in the capital markets,” Stark told CPN today. “Many lenders and owners need to address their development loans/assets and their own liquidity needs…. Our expertise as hands-on developers provides us the ability to work with these groups as well as provide fresh capital at the appropriately adjusted asset valuation.” Prior to joining Cantor, Stark was president of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of WCI Communities Inc., where he acquired almost 5,000 residential units, having secured financing of more than $1 billion from domestic and international institutions. He began his career as a real estate attorney at Lord Day & Lord, Barrett Smith. He later joined Halpern Real Estate Development, where he helped manage a merger with Reckson Associates. At Reckson, Stark launched an opportunity fund that made acquisitions in the student housing, office suite, and other niche real estate sectors. In addition to Real Estate, the Cantor Fitzgerald franchise includes institutional equity and fixed income sales and trading, investment banking, private equity and asset management. Other Cantor businesses include Cantor LifeMarkets, CantorGaming, CantorCO2e and Cantor Index.