Executive of the Year Spotlight: Glenn Rufrano

Rufrano implemented a plan to salvage VEREIT in the wake of an accounting scandal.
Glenn Rufrano (pictured) received Honorable Mention for the 2016 Executive of the Year award.

Glenn Rufrano (pictured) received Honorable Mention for the 2016 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.

Below you’ll find out more about the man behind VEREIT’s new approach to consistency and transparency.

Glenn Rufrano, CEO, VEREIT

Honorable Mention: Executive of the Year

Headquarters: Phoenix

CEO since: 2015

Previous position: President & CEO of Cushman & Wakefield Inc. (2010-2013).

VEREIT by the numbers: VEREIT employs 365 professionals in six offices. The company manages a total of $23.2 billion in real estate assets, spanning 139.2 million square feet. Including Cole Capital, VEREIT’s combined revenue topped $1.6 billion in 2015.

Road to recovery: Upon joining VEREIT last year, Rufrano set out to shave $2.2 billion out of the company’s total $19.2 billion portfolio and reestablish the Cole Capital brand, the non-listed REIT sponsor for which VEREIT manages $7.1 billion in real estate assets. His appointment followed the departure of the prior management team in the wake of a $23 million accounting impropriety and concomitant investigation.

Under Rufrano’s leadership, VEREIT accomplished its goal of achieving investment-grade metrics, receiving a BBB- rating with stable outlooks from Fitch Ratings in November 2016. It also met the objective of establishing a sustainable dividend, a quarterly annual distribution confirmed in Q3 2015.

Calculated moves: Year-to-date through October 2016, Rufrano oversaw $803 million of dispositions as part of strategic portfolio culling. In August, VEREIT closed a public offering of 69,000,000 shares of common stock with net proceeds of approximately $702.5 million used to pay down debt. The company refinanced the $1.3 billion of debt coming due next February through a successful bond offering and term loan.