When The Mack Co. merged into Cali Realty Corp. to form Mack-Cali Realty Corp. last December, the transaction also included Mackís holding of the Patriot American Office Group, a company the Mack family helped found in 1991.
"Bill Mack led a group of investors that were involved in that purchase, which was one of the first big bulk transactions of the RTC [Resolution Trust Corp.]," says Mack-Cali CEO Thomas A. Rizk. So when The Mack Co., with 17 million square feet of office and industrial space and $1.2 billion in transactions, merged into Call, the private, Dallas-based Patriot American Office Group went public, expanding Mack-Caliís contacts and relationships to the Southwest.
Mack-Caliís strength in that part of the country continued to grow in early 1998 with the acquisition of Pacifica Holding Co., a privately owned Denver-based real estate company. The transaction, valued at $188 million, added 19 class A office buildings. Because Mack-Cali already had a business relationship with the company, the acquisition went smoothly and, more importantly, gave Mack-Cali a foot in the door of the Denver real estate market, says Rizk.
"People ask if our plan as a company has changed or evolved with all of our acquisitions and mergers, but I think youíll see some really strong common themes in everything weíve done," says Rizk. "We are trying to become a significant or influential player in each of our markets, using relationships to grow the company."
Itís 9:30 Wednesday morning and Thomas A. Rizk is having breakfast in the lobby of a Melbourne, Fla., hotel, where he is staying with his wife, their two children and 900 10- and 11year-old boys. Itís not what most people would consider a relaxing vacation, but to the CEO of Mack-Cali Realty Corp., itís the most rewarding time of his life.
Rizk is part of the coaching staff of an all-star basketball team from Jersey City, N.J., only a few minutes away from his hometown of Ft. Lee. He and seven other chaperones are supervising more than a dozen kids they brought about 1,000 miles from the Jersey City Boys & Girls Club to compete in a week-long tournament.
From the sound of Rizkís hoarse voice, it has been a tough couple of days, but he doesnít let it show. "The kids are just great, and this is such a tremendous experience for them," he says, waiting for the stack of pancakes he ordered. "It is really important to give a little something back to a community where Mack-Cali has a lot of interests."
In fact, Mack-Cali has been involved with the organization for several years, donating thousands of dollars to the nonprofitís sports organizations.
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