Executive of the Year Spotlight: David Simon

The retail REIT expanded its footprint through strategic redevelopment.
David Simon (above) received Honorable Mention for the 2016 Retail Property Executive of the Year award.

David Simon (above) received Honorable Mention for the 2016 Retail Property Executive of the Year award.

This article kicks off a series of short profiles highlighting recipients of CPE’s Executives of the Year awards. Celebrating its 20th year, the program acknowledges the contributions of commercial real estate’s top executives across all major business sectors and asset types.

First-place winners and honorable mention awardees are chosen by a confidential vote of the CPE 100, an invited group of industry veterans.

Today’s installment introduces David Simon, the retail REIT leader who took his company public in what was then the largest real estate stock offering.

Honorable Mention: Retail Property Executive of the Year

David Simon, Chairman & CEO, Simon Property Group

Headquarters: Indianapolis

Years as CEO: 25

Previous roles: President of Simon Property Group (1993-1996), vice president of Wasserstein Perella & Co. (1988-1990), associate at First Boston Corp. (1985-1988).

Simon at a glance: The company’s combines revenue reached $5.3 billion in 2015. As of Sept. 30, 2016, Simon’s assets under management totaled $31.7 billion across 189 million square feet. As of Dec. 31, 2015, Simon employed approximately 5,000 people.

The Shops at Crystals: In April, a joint venture between Simon Property Group and Invesco purchased a $1.1 billion, 324,000-square-foot luxury retail center on the Las Vegas Strip. Anchored by 10 luxury flagship stores, the property lies at the entrance of MGM Resorts’ $9 billion CityCenter complex.

Allen Premium Outlets: In June, Simon began the expansion of Allen Premium Outlets, a retail complex in Allen, Tex. To accommodate the growing number of shoppers, the property is expected to add 1,300 new parking spaces, as well as 30 specialty retailers. Northeast of the retail center, a 22-acre plot was rezoned and is slated for new restaurants and hotels. The expansion is scheduled for fall 2017 completion.

King of Prussia Mall: In August, Simon unveiled the expansion of the nation’s second-largest mall: King of Prussia Mall, roughly 20 miles northeast of Philadelphia. Breaking ground in 2014, the expansion added a multilevel corridor, circumventing a road that previously bisected the mall and making room for 50 new retailers and eateries. The redevelopment also enabled some existing tenants to relocate to larger spaces.