Mick McGuire's Marcato Capital Management Files 13D on Syms, Now Trinity Place Holdings ~ market folly

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Mick McGuire's Marcato Capital Management Files 13D on Syms, Now Trinity Place Holdings

Mick McGuire's hedge fund firm Marcato Capital Management just filed a 13D with the SEC regarding the former Syms entity, now known as Trinity Place Holdings (TPHS).  Per the filing, Marcato has disclosed a 27.9% ownership stake in TPHS with 4,645,287 shares.

Syms Chapter 11

Retailer Syms Corp (SYMSQ) recently emerged from Chapter 11 as Trinity Place Holdings.  Per the 10-month bankruptcy, the company closed its retail stores (including Filene's Basement), liquidated inventories and redeemed all stock owned by Marcy Syms.

The funds needed to exit bankruptcy were supplied via the sale of $25 million worth of new common stock.  Marcato took part along with DS Advisors, and Esopus Creek Value Fund.

Trinity Place now emerges with commercial real estate and intellectual property.  Shares still trade over the counter, but now with a new symbol TPHS.

At present, the fine print of the 13D says that Marcato does not have any plans or proposals.  The filing also notes that Mark Ettenger (a consultant of Marcato) is on the board of directors.

In a separate Form 3 filed with the SEC, Marcato also discloses that they own 71,184 participating interests whose return is tied to the value of TPHS common stock. 

About Marcato

Readers should be familiar with Marcato as we've covered how McGuire previously worked at Bill Ackman's Pershing Square before starting his own fund.  Like Pershing, Marcato focuses on fundamental research and often employs activist investing.  While Pershing often focuses on large caps, Marcato's focuses seems to be on midcaps.

McGuire was named one of Institutional Investor's "Rising Stars" this year.  And we've covered how Marcato has been involved in CXW, pushing for a REIT conversion.

Next week, McGuire will be presenting investment ideas at the Value Investing Congress in New York along with David Einhorn, Bill Ackman and many more hedge fund managers.  Perhaps he'll talk about TPHS, but we'll have to wait and see.  There's still time to register for the event here.

About Trinity Place (Formerly Syms)

Per the company's press release, Trinity Place Holdings' "current business plan includes the monetization of 16 commercial real estate properties and the development of 28-42 Trinity Place in Lower Manhattan. The company also plans to explore the licensing of its intellectual property, including its rights to the Filene’s Basement trademark, the Stanley Blacker and Maine Bay brands, the intellectual property associated with the well-known Running of the Brides event, and An Educated Consumer is Our Best Customer slogan."

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