Mall Giant Simon to Cut Exec Pay As Coronavirus Keeps Stores Closed

As its fleet of malls and retail stores remains closed, Simon Property Group is implementing executive pay cuts.

In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing today, the mall giant revealed that it is reducing executive pay for a to-be-determined period of time “because of the COVID-19 pandemic and its related impact.”

Chairman, CEO and president David Simon will forfeit his base salary for the time being. Steven Fivel, general counsel and secretary of the company, and John Rulli, president of malls and chief administrative officer, are reducing their salaries by 30%. Meanwhile, Brian McDade, EVP, CFO and treasurer, and Alexander Snyder, assistant general counsel and assistant secretary of the company, will both see their salaries reduced by 25%.

With more than 100 malls and about 70 outlets in its fleet, Simon is the largest operator of shopping centers in the United States. All of the company’s domestic properties have been shut since March 18.

On March 31, a CNBC report said that Simon plans to furlough a third of its full-time and part-time workers as outposts remain closed due to the coronavirus. The company has not confirmed this report.

In its latest annual filing, as of Dec. 31, Simon employed about 4,500 workers. Of that number, 1,500 were part-time and 1,000 were based at the group’s Indianapolis headquarters.

Amidst the so-call retail apocalypse, shopping malls have had to contend with waning foot traffic and vacancies. The coronavirus has been another blow to mall owners, with outposts forced to shutter as the majority of Americans live under stay-at-home orders. Further, many retail tenants are likely to ask for rent to be waived amid the closures; Urban Outfitters Inc., for instance, has said it will not pay rent while its doors are closed because of the coronavirus.

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