Hedge funds that have recently boosted their stakes in Macy’s are now pushing the department store retailer to create a real estate investment trust (REIT) that would leverage its real estate holdings, according to CNBC.
The pressure comes as Sears Holdings, Hudson’s Bay, and other department stores have made or considered similar moves.
Macy’s appeared to resist the REIT idea, saying it considers what to do with its properties on a case-by-case basis.
The push for department stores and other retailers with significant real estate holdings to spin them off to unleash their value seems to be growing. For Sears, which will complete its REIT next month, it will release much-needed cash as the retailer tries to regain its footing and continues to bleed cash.
But for Macy’s to, say, sell off and then rent back its New York City flagship Herald Square location could be a great loss to its identity and branding. As its real estate value increases, continued pressure from certain investors to unlock it will likely follow.