Ares real estate president and CEO Todd Schuster resigns

Partner John Jardine has been appointed president and co-chief executive, while chairman Robert Rosen is serving as co-chief executive temporarily.  

Todd Schuster, 54, has resigned as president and chief executive of Chicago-based ARES Commercial Real Estate Corporation (ACRE).

In his place the board of directors appointed vice president and partner John Jardine as president and Co-CEO. Chairman Robert Rosen has been appointed as Co-CEO on an interim basis, reports PDI sister publication Real Estate Capital.

ACRE declined to make Schuster available for comment, but the firm’s filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission stated that the resignation was effective 26 Aug.

“The decision of Mr. Schuster to resign did not involve a disagreement with the company on any matter relating to the company’s operations, policies or practices,” according to the filing.

Schuster served as director at ACRE since April 2012. He became Co-CEO in June 2013 until he was appointed chief executive and president in March 2014. He previously founded Continental Wingate Financial Services in 1991, serving as CEO for 18 years, and before that he worked for Salomon Brothers and Bankers Trust within those firms’ commercial mortgage finance units.

Jardine has led debt origination for ACRE, including its mortgage banking subsidiary ACRE Capital, since 2013. Before joining Ares, Jardine served as managing director at C-III Asset Management, managing large loan assets and a portfolio of collateralized debt obligations between 2011 and 2013.  He previously worked for Crocker Partners, Credit Suisse and Dillon Read Capital, and before that he spent more than two decades at Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF).

“I look forward to my new role in leading the company to continue its growth,” Jardine said in the statement. “We are prospering from the repositioning actions we took last year to optimize our balance sheet and expand our origination capabilities.”

Rosen has been on the board of ACRE since the company’s initial public offering in May 2012, and has been chairman of the board since October 2014. He has been the director at Ares Capital Corporation since 2004.

ACRE is focused on originating, investing in and managing middle-market commercial real estate loans and other commercial real estate-related investments. The company’s stock rose about 18 percent year-to-date.

In January this year, Ares Management won a $700 million commercial real estate debt mandate from a large North American specialty life insurer to originate US commercial mortgage loans.