NEW YORK — Two R.H. Macy & Co. board members are scheduled to meet today with Cyrus R. Vance, the court-appointed mediator, in what could be the first step toward increasing the $3.6 billion valuation of the bankrupt chain.
The two board members — Laurence A. Tisch and Louis Page — represent a dissident minority.
Since February, Tisch has disagreed sharply with what he sees as a too-low price tag placed on Macy’s by management and The Blackstone Group, Macy’s financial advisor. Tisch is chairman of Loews Corp. and CBS Inc. Page, executive vice president of Winmex Investments Ltd., represents the interests of Hong Kong businessman Run Run Shaw. Harold M. Williams, president and chief executive of the J. Paul Getty Trust, who also has been pressing to increase the valuation of the company in a revised Macy’s proposal, is not expected to attend.
Blackstone originally valued Macy’s at $3.3 billion. Tisch and other dissident board members successfully pushed for an increase to $3.6 billion and contend that the embattled retailer is worth as much as $4 billion.
At an April 25 board meeting at which a revision of Macy’s $3.6 billion term sheet was discussed, a split developed between the board members who backed the current valuation and the dissident group, which pushed for a higher valuation.
Williams wrote a letter to the board stating that certain equity holders were willing to invest additional dollars in Macy’s in a plan based on a higher valuation.
Tisch was unavailable for comment Wednesday and Williams’s office said he did not care to comment.
At today’s meeting with Vance, the board members are looking for advice on how to proceed in their efforts to increase Macy’s valuation in formulating a reorganization plan .
Macy’s is scheduled to submit its revised proposal to Vance on April 29.
Tisch and Page, as Macy preferred shareholders and bondholders, stand to benefit from a higher Macy’s valuation and have been criticized in the past for potential conflicts of interest.
Williams also owns Macy bonds worth about $85,000 at current market prices.