MINNEAPOLIS — An activist investor pushing for Target Corp. here to unlock value in its real estate portfolio on Tuesday announced a slate of five nominees for the retailer’s board of directors.
Target had previously said it would not recommend the investor, Bill Ackman of Pershing Square Capital management, or another of his nominees, for its board and recommended instead the re-election of four directors whose terms expire at the date of its annual meeting May 28.
The five-member slate announced Tuesday by Pershing includes Ackman and Jim Donald, the former chief executive officer of Pathmark and Starbucks. It also includes Michael L. Ashner, CEO of Winthrop Realty Trust; Ronald J. Golson, a professor at Stanford Law School; and Richard Vague, the former CEO of First USA bank.
In materials filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission this week, Pershing argued that Target’s board lacks retail experience, particularly with food, and said the company had not gotten credit for the value of its real estate in its stock. Pershing argued that the company should spin off its real estate to a separate real estate investment trust.
Target in a statement on Monday said it had engaged in discussions with Pershing over the past 20 months and said it was “disappointed that Pershing Square has decided to pursue a costly and disruptive proxy contest.”
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