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Vornado Executives Take Pay Cuts

Vornado CEO Steven Roth at REITWeek 2014

Five of Vornado’s top executives are taking pay cuts for the rest of the year, the office and retail investment trust said in a regulatory filing Friday.

Vornado declined to comment beyond its filing.

CEO Steve Roth took the largest cut at 50%, a Securities and Exchange Commission form filed Friday shows. Vornado President Michael Franco and Chief Financial Officer Joseph Macnow took a 30% pay decrease, while head of real estate Glen J. Weiss and head of retail Haim H. Chera both took 15% pay cuts, the company said in the filing. 

Vornado’s board members also gave back their $75K retainer, The Real Deal reported. The voluntary move by Vornado’s executives is the latest in a series of executive pay cuts across a real estate sector hit hard by the coronavirus, including salary decreases at Airbnb, Compass and Newmark Knight Frank, according to TRD. 

The filing did not show how much executives will take home this year after the cut. Roth made just over $880K in base pay last year, TRD reports. 

The virus has hit the retail and office real estate markets hard. During a recent Bisnow webinar, PIMCO Portfolio Manager Jeffrey Thompson said the future of retail and office real estate looks “murky” even as soon as a few months out. 

Office leasing dipped 50% last quarter and tension has grown between office landlords and tenants as May 1 approaches, as landlords assert that their tenants must prove they are struggling in order to skip paying rent.

Coworking giant WeWork reportedly skipped rent on several locations nationally last month in an effort to drive down costs, and Knotel is trying to get rid of 20% of its portfolio. 

The retail market in New York has also been hit hard by the virus as stores across the city were forced to close under a statewide stay-at-home order.