Macyâ€™s Inc. named Four Corners Property Trust Inc. Chief Executive Officer Bill Lenehan to its board, enlisting a real estate expert to help the chain figure out what to do with its properties.
The 39-year-old will join the board on April 1, the Cincinnati-based company said in a statement. Lenehan, who became CEO of Four Corners last year, has previously worked at such firms as MI Development and Farallon Capital Management LLC.
Macyâ€™s is looking to sell portions of its flagship stores in Manhattan, San Francisco, Chicago and Minneapolis, as well as mall-based properties. Tishman Speyer is interested in taking stakes in the locations, and Macyâ€™s has been searching for a real estate executive to oversee the effort. Some investors have urged the department-store chain to go further and form a real estate investment trust, or REIT, but Macyâ€™s has rejected that idea.
Real estate is â€œan important area of activity as we work to create shareholder value through joint ventures or other partnerships related to Macyâ€™s flagship stores and mall properties,â€ Macyâ€™s CEO Terry Lundgren said in the statement. â€œBillâ€™s perspective is rooted in his real estate experience in a variety of industry sectors, including net lease, restaurants, mall, office, residential and mixed-use.â€ Activist investor Starboard Captial, which has been pushing for Macyâ€™s to better capitalize on its properties since July, said the retailerâ€™s real estate is worth $21 billion. Thatâ€™s more than the companyâ€™s current enterprise value. Another investor, Greenlight Capitalâ€™s David Einhorn, has said he could see a private equity firm teaming up with a REIT to buy the company.