A bit of history . . . I was a newly minted NYSE REIT chief financial officer in 1994, and I had the pleasure of attending a dinner during a NAREIT conference hosted by Wells Fargo’s real estate banking team. I was lucky to be seated next to Martin Bucksbaum, CEO of General Growth Properties, and I vividly recall the conversation with one of the icons of our industry. 

Like so many real estate institutions, General Growth was started as a “family” business. The company was founded in 1954 by the Bucksbaum family and went public in 1972. In 1984 the family didn’t feel that the stock price adequately reflected the value of the assets and took the company private, delivering a 22% return to its shareholders. 

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