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A&B Promotes Christopher J. Benjamin to CEO

July 28, 2015, 3:30 PM HST (Updated July 28, 2015, 3:31 PM) · 0 Comments
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Chris Benjamin. Courtesy photo.

Chris Benjamin. Courtesy photo.

By Maui Now Staff

The Alexander & Baldwin Inc. Board of Directors has promoted Christopher J. Benjamin as its CEO effective Jan. 1, 2016. Benjamin is currently the president and COO of A&B and president of A&B Properties Inc., a wholly owned real estate subsidiary of A&B.

Stanley M. Kuriyama will retire as CEO on Dec. 31, 2015, and will continue to serve as A&B’s executive chairman of the board. Kuriyama has been A&B’s chief executive officer since Jan. 1, 2010.

During this time, the company has undergone a significant transformation, including:

  • The separation of A&B’s real estate and transportation business in 2012, which created two of Hawai‘i’s largest publicly-traded companies—A&B Inc. and Matson Inc.
  • The investment of $1.2 billion in Hawai‘i real estate, including acquisitions such as 70% of the commercial center of Kailua from Kaneohe Ranch and the Harold K. L. Castle Foundation, and 30 properties along Kahala Avenue from Genshiro Kawamoto.
  • The acquisition of Grace Pacific in 2013, Hawai‘i’s largest natural materials and paving contractor.
  • The continued expansion of A&B’s development pipeline, including commercial, residential and high-rise condominium projects on Maui, Kaua‘i and O‘ahu.

With $2.4 billion in assets, A&B is over 70% larger than it was three years ago when it separated from Matson.

“On behalf of the entire board, I’d like to extend our deepest gratitude and appreciation to Stan for his extraordinary leadership as CEO of A&B,” said Charles G. King, A&B lead independent director. “In the years that Stan has been at the helm, he conceived a new path forward for A&B and shepherded it though transformational changes, making it a stronger, more focused company. He has led A&B with vision, integrity and humility, always placing the company’s interests above his own. We are grateful that A&B will continue to benefit from Stan’s counsel and leadership through his continued chairmanship of our board of directors.”

“We are also very pleased with the succession of Chris Benjamin as A&B’s new chief executive officer,”said King. “Chris has served A&B with distinction during his 14 years with the company, including the last four as its president and chief operating officer, and has played an instrumental role in the company’s successes over that time. We look forward to working with Chris during the years ahead.”

Kuriyama added, “I am pleased to entrust the day-to-day management and leadership of the company to Chris, who brings to the CEO position a broad skill set and breadth of experience, as well as a deep commitment to our community. Chris has worked at such companies as The Queen’s Health Systems, General Motors, Sony, and Booz Allen prior to joining A&B in 2001, and has served in numerous non-profit leadership roles over the nearly 25 years he has lived and worked in Hawai‘i.

“As A&B’s president and COO, Chris oversaw the investment of $900 million in commercial properties, development projects and other real estate investments in Hawai‘i, well positioning A&B to take advantage of the current upturn in the real estate cycle,” Kuriyama continued. “Chris also was instrumental in the successful migration of A&B’s Mainland commercial real estate assets to Hawai‘i, thereby improving the quality of our portfolio substantially. Today, 80% of the $77 million of net operating income generated by A&B’s commercial portfolio comes from Hawai‘i properties as compared to 42% when Chris took the reins, and A&B is now the second largest commercial retail property owner in the state.”

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“Through this promotion to chief executive officer, the board of directors and I express our confidence in Chris’ capabilities and our optimism about the Company’s future under his leadership,” said Kuriyama.

The board also announced that Lance Parker, currently ABP senior vice president of acquisitions and dispositions, will replace Benjamin as president of A&B Properties effective Sept. 1, 2015.

“With his diverse real estate knowledge and experience, Lance will be an excellent successor to Chris as A&B Properties’ president,” said Kuriyama. “Lance has contributed significantly to the real estate business’ growth and success, not only through the real estate transactions that he has executed, but also because of his deep integrity and inclusive approach to community building. We are proud of his accomplishments and look forward to his continued leadership.

Christopher J. Benjamin, 52, has been A&B’s president and COO since September 2011, overseeing its real estate and agribusiness subsidiaries. Before assuming those positions, Benjamin was A&B’s CFO from February 2004 through September 2011. He joined A&B in 2001 as director, corporate development and planning, and was promoted to vice president in 2003. Benjamin received his MBA from Harvard Business School in 1989. He currently serves as chairman of the board of The Nature Conservancy of Hawai‘i.

Stanley Kuriyama. Courtesy photo.

Stanley M. Kuriyama. Courtesy photo.

Stanley M. Kuriyama, 61, is chairman and chief executive officer of Alexander & Baldwin Inc. He became chairman in June 2012. Prior to that, he served as the company’s president and CEO and on the board of directors since January 2010. Kuriyama first joined A&B in 1992 and since then has held various positions within the organization including serving as A&B’s president from October 2008, president and chief executive officer of A&B Land Group from July 2005 until September 2008, and COO of A&B Properties from December 1999 to September 2008. Prior to joining A&B, Kuriyama was a partner in the law firm of Cades Schutte Fleming & Wright, specializing in real estate and real estate financing. He is a 1977 graduate of Harvard Law School.

Lance Parker. Courtesy photo.

Lance Parker. Courtesy photo.

Lance K. Parker, 41, has been A&B Properties’ senior vice president of acquisitions and dispositions since 2013. Parker has held several positions of increasing responsibility at ABP since joining the company in 2004. In his current role, Parker is responsible for the company’s real estate acquisitions and dispositions in Hawai‘i and the US Mainland, and also serves as the company’s principal broker. Prior to joining A&B, he was an associate vice president with Grubb & Ellis in California, where he provided commercial brokerage, advisory and transactional services. He is a 1995 graduate of the University of Southern California, with a bachelor’s degree in real property management and development. He is a licensed real estate broker in the State of Hawai‘i and a Certified Commercial Investment Member.

Additional information about A&B may be found online.

Additional information may be found at A&B Properties’ website.

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