Ohio REIT hires former Equity One executive team

David Lukes
David Lukes

An Ohio-based real estate investment trust (REIT) hired three former top executives of North Miami Beach-based Equity One Inc., which merged into Regency Centers Corporation last week.

DDR Corp.,  a Beachwood, Ohio-based REIT, hired former Equity One CEO David Lukes as its president and chief executive officer and appointed him to its board of directors.

DDR also hired Matthew Ostrower as its chief financial officer and Michael Makinen as its chief operating officer. Ostrower and Makinen held the same positions with Equity One.

Terrance Ahem, chairman of DDR, said in a prepared statement that the company’s directors and its former CEO, Thomas August, “were very pleased when the opportunity arose to have David, Mike and Matt join DDR.”

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Lukes is the fourth chief executive of DDR since 2009. August, his predecessor, had held the top job since July of last year. August’s prior real estate experience was in the office market.

Prior to joining Equity One, Lukes held CEO  jobs at Seritage Realty Trust, an affiliate of Sears Holdings Corp.; and Mall Properties, Inc. Before that, he was chief operating officer at Kimco Realty Corp., which owns and manages open-air shopping centers with tenants similar to those at DDR’s properties.

Equity One, a retail REIT, completed its $5 billion merger into Jacksonville-based Regency Centers on March 1. [Cleveland Plain Dealer] Mike Seemuth