ATLANTA-Post Properties Inc. directors meet Tuesday to review options and game plans to bring the locally based REIT back in the black.

At least one of those options could be the sale or merger of the 31-year-old company, according to speculation on Wall Street–speculation that company CEO/president David Stockert himself acknowledged during an Internet conference call with analysts Nov. 5. But Stockert stopped short of confirming or denying the rumor’s accuracy.

“Obviously, there’s a lot of rumors swirling around, and that’s being fueled by this disconnect between private market pricing and REIT share prices,” Stockert said during the conference call. He said he and other company officials “don’t really want to participate in that conjecture and speculation and rumor.”

If Post were sold or merged, it would clearly be one of the biggest transactions this year in the REIT industry, analysts say.

At Tuesday’s board meeting, Stockert told analysts Post directors will “look at every option available to maximize value for the shareholders.”

One option sure to be on the table, analysts say, is a cut in the company’s annual dividend of $3.12 per share. Analysts say Post’s current cash flow can’t support that high a dividend. They point to the company’s year-long sales of apartment communities, largely to cover its dividend payouts.

For the nine-month period, Post logged $190 million in gross apartment community sales and the closing of its Post Massachusetts Avenue joint venture development project in Washington, DC, the company says in its third-quarter earnings filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission as reports elsewhere on this page.

On the same day as the conference call, Merrill Lynch analyst Steve Sakwa predicted in a new analysis Post would trim its dividend by 36%. “We believe that weak fundamentals in the apartment industry will force Post to cut its dividend to roughly $2 per share, which will, nonetheless, provide investors with a 7.9% yield,” Sakwa says in his analysis.

Merrill Lynch continues to give Post common a “buy” rating for its strong yield. The stock opened Friday morning on the New York Stock Exchange at $25.50 per share. The stock’s 52-week high-low is $36.70 and $22.40 per share. There are 36.9 million common shares outstanding.

Post, which owns 30,317 multifamily units in 84 communities, has sold its third-party management and landscaping operations and reduced its workforce by a third in the past 12 months.

Still, some analysts and Atlanta area brokers argue, Post’s existing management would find it difficult to give up control of the company chairman John A. Williams founded in 1971 and ran for 31 years before stepping down as president/CEO in March of this year.

That’s when the 38-year-old Stockert became the company’s CEO and president. He joined Post Jan. 1, 2001 after a highly successful career as senior vice president and chief financial officer of Weeks Corp. which later was merged into Duke-Weeks Realty Corp. and then became Duke Realty Corp. after principal Raymond Weeks retired.

According to Post’s Web site, the company’s directors are Williams; Stockert; vice chairman John T. Glover; Arthur M. Blank, co-founder/retired co-chairman, The Home Depot Inc.; Herschel M. Bloom, partner, King & Spaulding law firm; Russel R. French, general partner, Noro-Moseley Partners; Robert C. Goddard III, chairman/CEO, Goddard Investment Group LLC; Charles E. Rice, chairman, Mayport Venture Partners LLC; and Ronald de Waal, chairman, WE International b.v. (The Netherlands) and vice chairman, Saks Inc. (USA).

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2023 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join now!

  • Free unlimited access to's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2023 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.