Overview

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The Preeminent Firm in Retail Real Estate Advisory Services

When it comes to retail real estate, no one offers or does more than RCS Real Estate Advisors. Since our founding in 1981, we’ve built a reputation for delivering innovative solutions that unlock the potential of retail real estate assets for our clients throughout the United States and Canada. Whether we’re building solid footprints in the retail marketplace, overcoming challenges with existing real estate portfolios, or acting as an outsourced real estate department, retailers trust us to deliver results that maximize the financial potential of their retail real estate.

RCS is a team of proven real estate experts with extensive senior executive-level experience in the retail industry. We employ our keen negotiating skills, strong landlord relationships, exceptional retail real estate expertise, and sharp insights to formulate successful real estate strategies – and effectively bring those strategies and solutions to fruition.

Our services include portfolio assessments, expansions, lease renewals, rent renegotiations, dispositions, terminations, and equity investments. We specialize in reducing occupancy costs, restructuring leases, and expanding footprints. RCS also goes beyond the initial transaction to provide continuous management of your portfolio, ensuring your real estate performs at its optimal level.

Executive Team

Ivan L. Friedman
Ivan L. Friedman President and CEO
Mr. Friedman has decades of experience in retail management, the ability to see where markets are headed and unmatched negotiation skills. Mr. Friedman remains the driving force behind our track record of delivering results.
Eileen F. Mitchell
Eileen F. MitchellPartner
Ms. Mitchell’s background as a senior retail executive allows her to direct the processes and systems that harness the collective experience and insights of our entire team for our clients’ individual needs and circumstances.
Spence J. Mehl
Spence J. MehlPartner
Mr. Mehl’s experience and demonstrated skills across all facets of our business have made him a trusted partner for many national clients. His abilities as an effective negotiator and expert in property dispositions are recognized throughout our industry.
Mitchel S. Friedman
Mitchel S. FriedmanPartner
As a former investment banker for JPMorgan, Mr. Friedman identifies opportunities to capture more of the value in our clients’ real estate assets to achieve better results in both their retail locations and their firms’ bottom lines.
Ed Coury
Ed CouryManaging Director
Mr. Coury’s over 30 years of real estate experience on both the landlord and tenant side of retail leasing enable him to provide incomparable insights to drive the best possible outcomes for our clients.
Warren Kiersh
Warren KiershVice President
Recognized negotiating skills and extensive real estate knowledge have made Mr. Kiersh a trusted partner for clients in extracting maximum value from distressed assets and securing high-performing retail locations.
Moe Puri
Moe PuriVice President
Mr. Puri’s operational and merchandising background means he understands how to successfully manage the bottom line for retailers. This experience combined with his insights on the retail industry make him instrumental in driving the success of our client solutions.
Gregg S. Lurie
Gregg S. LurieVice President
With over 32 years of real estate experience, Mr. Lurie has been responsible for retail lease restructuring, lease terminations, tenant representation, retail shopping center, residential and hotel development, and has represented an enviable roster of prominent retailers.
Donna Fauchald
Donna FauchaldVice President
With over 25 years of real estate experience representing national tenant brands across North America, Ms. Donna Fauchald has an extensive background in lease negotiation, site selection, and market analysis. Prior to joining RCS, Donna held senior real estate and executive roles at Christopher & Banks, Pacific Sunwear, Wilsons Leather, and International Dairy Queen.
“RCS was an integral part of our operational turnaround.”

– Theo Killion, CEO, Zale Corporation

RCS Clients and Testimonials

“RCS Real Estate Advisors was a terrific partner to the Group APM Monaco as we navigated the impact of COVID and sought to restructure our US portfolio of locations. The end results were material improvements and savings to our store leases allowing APM to mitigate some of the impact of the 2020 and 2021 reduction in retail trade specifically to our Brand.”
– Ingrid Higueras, CFO, Group APM Monaco

“RCS Real Estate Advisors acts as a true extension of our Cole Haan team. They have listened to our needs and have successfully achieved our desired outcomes for over 100 locations across the US and Canada. Their assistance has financially benefitted the Company thru rent abatements, rent deferments, and rent restructuring. RCS has truly exceeded all of our expectations. They are an excellent partner handling difficult lease negotiations professionally and timely. We are very pleased with the very significant occupancy savings achieved so far.”
– Tom Linko, CFO, Cole Haan

“RCS has been a long-term partner with Bed Bath & Beyond and its multi-branded portfolio in the ongoing optimization of the real estate. They have collaborated in the ever-changing environment of the BBB Brands and as an extension of the Real Estate and Finance departments. RCS dedicated countless hours for the Company. Frankly, it was a tremendous partnership and a great value as part of the turnaround of the BBBY Brands. They created significant financial benefits to the Company, far in excess of its high expectations. We made the right choice hiring RCS — they are well respected in the real estate industry on both sides of the table for a simple reason, they produce!”
– Seth Geldzahler, Senior Managing Director, JLL Iselin
Former VP of Real Estate, Bed Bath & Beyond

“We selected RCS as we knew their long-standing senior level landlord relationships and their ability to partner effectively with our internal real estate team were the right combination for success. We are very pleased with how right we were. RCS exceeded our expectations by delivering significant occupancy costs savings and achieving cost-effective terminations for Aeropostale. We greatly appreciate RCS helping us achieve our long-term goals.”
– Eric Stevenson, Vice President of Real Estate, Aéropostale

“We greatly appreciate all of the efforts of RCS Real Estate Advisors to help us close down the retail stores of Juicy Couture (when we were still known as Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc.). RCS was diligent in its efforts to obtain cost-effective terminations to these leases in as timely a manner as possible. We greatly appreciate the work and partnership of RCS.”
– Philip Rosenzweig, VP of Real Estate, Store Design & Construction, Kate Spade & Company

“Without RCS Real Estate Advisors, the optimization of our retail footprint would have had very different results. RCS was an excellent partner in assisting us develop our real estate strategy and, very importantly, in executing this strategy in a timely and cost effective manner.”
– Rick Cote, President and COO, Movado Group, Inc.

testimonials_perfumania

“As our outsourced real estate arm, RCS Real Estate Advisors has done a phenomenal job of positioning our business. In addition to being experts at lease renewals, renegotiations and terminations, they have also done a great job of identifying the best sites for our growth plan so we are well positioned for continued success.”
– Michael Katz, President and CEO, Perfumania Holdings Inc.

testimonials_zales

“RCS was an integral part of our operational turnaround. They are outstanding professionals and I would recommend them to other retailers who need to modify their store portfolio or adjust occupancy costs.”
– Theo Killion, CEO, Zale Corporation

Case Studies

National Home Furnishings
Big Box Retailer

In 2018, RCS Real Estate Advisors was retained by a national big-box retailer with a 1,500-store, 43-million-square-foot portfolio. Since its engagement, RCS has reduced rents by $200 million in addition to negotiating buyouts for 10% of the store base which had been deemed underperforming by the client.

Furthermore, during the 2020 COVID pandemic, RCS negotiated rent abatement deals with landlords to help ease the financial distress of lockdown.

The RCS team is experienced in generating savings for clients of all sizes from regional brands to national big-box retailers.

True Religion
National Apparel Retailer

RCS Real Estate Advisors was retained by national apparel retailer True Religion to assist in their planned reorganization. RCS restructured the company’s entire portfolio, saving $10 million dollars while retaining over 60% of the company’s portfolio on mid-term agreements materially favorable to the company.

A valued RCS client, True Religion is currently pivoting to a post-reorganization and post-COVID world with its portfolio aligned with the company’s goals.

Le Pain Quotidien
Maison Kyser
Aurify Brands

RCS Real Estate Advisors was engaged by Aurify Brands, a builder, owner and operator of category-leading fast casual restaurant networks, to provide acquisition analysis and post-acquisition portfolio real estate restructuring prior to the company’s acquisition of national café chain Le Pain Quotidien.

RCS was successful in renegotiating terminations in the acquisition fleet at 60-80% reductions from confined rents. Upon feeling the early stages of the pandemic, these terms were integral to the success of this acquisition.

Notably, a trend arose in “gateway cities” such as New York, Boston, and Washington DC. Rents achieved for mid-term length leases were a fraction of market rents then and today. Following this success, RCS was again retained as Aurify continued their expansion with the purchase of Maison Kayser. RCS continues to be the outsourced real estate department of the LPQ and Maison Kayser brands.

Private Equity Owners

RCS Real Estate Advisors has done extensive work on behalf of private equity firms. RCS’s comprehensive services include analysis during the purchase of a brand as well as the subsequent restructuring and optimization of the real estate portfolio. This value-added component was often integral to the valuation and successful acquisitions.

In the past two years, RCS has worked with over 2,000 locations of private equity-owned retail and has saved over $150 million for seven PE-owned brands. RCS has demonstrated quantifiable success while working alongside PE firms.

“We greatly appreciate all of the efforts and partnership of RCS Real Estate Advisors to help us close down the retail stores of Juicy Couture. RCS was diligent in its efforts to obtain cost-effective terminations to these leases in as timely a manner as possible.”

– Philip Rosenzweig, VP of Real Estate, Store Design & Construction, Kate Spade & Company