This is a case study that's a part of the 2021 REIT Industry ESG Report, an annual report detailing the REIT industry's environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance details in the publicly traded U.S. REIT industry. Featured case studies showcase REIT leadership and ESG innovation from a variety of sectors and serve as a practical tool for stakeholders to assess the scale and impact of the REIT industry's ESG commitments and initiatives.
Kimco Realty Corporation (NYSE: KIM) is committed to the health and safety of its tenants, associates, vendors, shoppers, and the community members in the areas its centers serve.
Recognizing the significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic on each of these stakeholder groups, the organization launched a multi-faceted COVID-19 support program, encompassing a number of key initiatives including the following:
- Development of a Tenant Assistance Program that offered free-of-charge Federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) application assistance, resulting in more than $20M in loans extended and more than 600 Kimco tenants served.
- Expedited approval processes for restaurant tenants seeking to expand outdoor dining options, helping businesses stay open while pivoting to meet evolving health and safety requirements.
- Rapidly deployed Curbside Pickup™ infrastructure across more than 300 properties, designed to help businesses adapt to new shopping habits while also allowing customers to safely ease back into a daily shopping routine.
- Leveraged national partnership with SCORE, providing tenants and vendors exclusive access to webinars and mentoring opportunities with small business coaches.
- Enhanced community support services, including the repurposing of properties to serve as drive-thru testing centers, blood drive locations, or meal delivery sites.
This focus on stakeholder engagement is one of the pillars in Kimco's ESG program, along with embracing the future of retail, engaging tenants and communities, leading in operations and resiliency, and fostering an engaged, inclusive, and ethical team. As it relates to deepening employee relationships, in 2020 Kimco received re-certification as a "Best Place to Work," while also achieving its highest employee satisfaction level in more than five years.
"This was the year when ESG got real. Between COVID-19 and the social justice movement fueled by Black Lives Matter, it has never been more evident how important ESG, DEI, and stakeholder engagement topics are to business."
Will Teichman, Vice President of Business Operations
In the coming year, Kimco—with the highest levels of support in the company and its dedicated ESG governance bodies—intends to finalize additional goals that underscore the importance of the "S" of ESG to the organization's long-term strategy, including bold targets around tenant and community engagement and satisfaction.
Kimco Realty Corporation is a real estate investment trust headquartered in Jericho, N.Y. that is one of North America's largest publicly traded owners and operators of open-air, grocery-anchored shopping centers and mixed-used assets.