Sean Burroughs had been managing director at Thirlstone Homes, part of Tony Pidgley Sr’s Berkeley Group empire, until he left in November.
Thirlstone was closed down by Berkeley last week.
Cadenza’s founders, Pidgley Jr and Rex Nevett, worked with Burroughs at Thirlstone, which was taken over by Berkeley for almost £20m in 1998.
Pidgley Jr left Berkeley in 2001 to set up Cadenza.
Nevett, who is chairman at Cadenza, said: “We took Sean Burroughs on board because of his expertise on land.”
Nevett ruled out taking anyone else on from Thirlstone, which specialised in small-scale upmarket developments with units valued at about £500,000.
High-price residential sales are expected to weaken over the next year, particularly in the Home Counties, which had been targeted by Thirlstone.
The 15 staff at Thirlstone were notified of the decision to end the company’s operations last Thursday.
Last year it was revealed that Pidgley Jr has held discussions with brokers over a possible float of Cadenza some time after 2007.
Pidgley Sr floated Berkeley Group in 1985.