ICSC’s layoffs paint dark picture for retailers it represents

Industry association previously cancelled the REcon convention

TRD NATIONAL /
Jun.June 11, 2020 05:00 PM
ICSC President Tom McGee (ICSC via YouTube, iStock)

ICSC President Tom McGee (ICSC via YouTube, iStock)

Retailers were already suffering in the hands of the coronavirus pandemic. Now, even their trade association is struggling.

The International Council of Shopping Centers is laying off 65 employees today, according to a filing with the New York Department of Labor. The group checked the “unforeseeable business circumstances prompted by Covid-19” box that so many employers in the state have in similar filings since late March.

That month, the association suspended its annual REcon convention, the industry’s biggest get-together. The event typically brings tens of thousands of attendees to Las Vegas to network and party.

In 2018, according to ICSC’s most recent available tax filing, about $55 million of its $79 million in revenue came from conventions and conferences. Another $14 million came from membership dues. CEO Tom McGee’s total compensation that year was $2.8 million, and the group had 174 employees.

As many as 25,000 stores might close this year as a result of the pandemic, mostly in malls, according to a recent report by Coresight Research.

ICSC has advocated for its members during shutdowns across the U.S. and the world. In March, the trade group requested aid from the Trump administration to assist its 70,000 members.

Last month the organization formed America’s Recovery Fund Coalition in partnership with 100 trade associations and business organizations to advocate for additional federal assistance for retailers.

ICSC’s office stands in Rockefeller Center, where the organization inked a 15-year lease in 2018.

Contact Sasha Jones at [email protected]


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