David Henry, vice chairman and CEO of Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE: KIM), joined REIT.com for a CEO Spotlight video interview during REITWeek 2015: NAREIT’s Investor Forum, held in New York.
Henry is stepping down at the end of the year and turning over the CEO position to Conor Flynn. Henry said ensuring that the transition is “easy for the market” has been one of Kimco’s chief goals.
“We announced that I would retire in February of this year, so that gave the market plenty of notice,” Henry said. “I think it’s going well.”
Henry noted that he has worked with Flynn at Kimco for more than 12 years, with Flynn working his way up the ranks of the organization. Flynn is “more than ready to take the reins,” according to Henry.
Turning to Kimco’s activity in the transactions market, Henry said the company is approaching the end of its latest round of capital recycling. The firm has sold off roughly $4 billion in assets in this cycle, and Henry said the dispositions will likely be finished by the end of the year.
Regarding Kimco’s operating performance, Henry attributed the firm’s latest year-over-year improvements in results to healthy market fundamentals for neighborhood shopping centers. New construction has been restrained, he said, while the population and economy continue to grow.
“You’re seeing it in all of our vital signs: occupancy, rents, leasing spreads, renewals,” Henry observed.
Henry pointed out that with rents still recovering, the outlook for new construction in the near term is muted.