REIT Veteran to Take Helm at Brixmor

Two months after a leadership shakeup, the retail owner/operator is bringing in James Taylor of Federal Realty Investment Trust as its president & CEO.
Brentwood Plaza, a grocery-anchored retail center owned by Brixmor Property Group in Cincinnati.

Brentwood Plaza, a grocery-anchored retail center owned by Brixmor Property Group in Cincinnati.

Two months after financial reporting problems prompted a shakeup at Brixmor Property Group Inc., the retail owner-operator has found a new leader. James Taylor, who currently serves as CFO of Federal Realty Investment Trust, will assume his new duties as Brixmor’s president & CEO on May 20, the company announced on Tuesday.

Brixmor cited Taylor’s wide-ranging experience in retail real estate, strategic planning, operations, leasing, redevelopment and finance. “Jim is a proven leader who we feel is uniquely qualified to enhance Brixmor’s position within the industry, while maximizing value for shareholders,” said John Schreiber, chairman of Brixmor’s board of directors, in a statement.

The selection of a chief executive represents a milestone for Brixmor, a New York City-based affiliate of the Blackstone Group whose 87 million-square-foot portfolio constitutes the nation’s largest wholly owned holdings of grocery-anchored neighborhood and community shopping centers. A review by the firm’s audit committee determined that some personnel were smoothing income items in order to achieve consistent same-store net operating income growth. The disclosures led to the departures of Michael Carroll, then Brixmor’s CEO; Michael Pappagallo, president & CFO; and Steven Splain, its former chief accounting officer.

To calm the waters, Brixmor’s board brought in Daniel Hurwitz, the highly regarded former head of DDR Inc., as interim CEO & president. Hurwitz will stay on during the transition and will continue to serve on Brixmor’s board after Taylor takes the helm.

Before joining Federal Realty in 2012, Taylor was senior managing director & head of real estate investment banking at Eastdil Secured. He also practiced corporate and securities law at Hunton & Williams.