Pedestrians walk past Macy's flagship store in New York.

Macy’s has tapped Douglas W. Sesler, a well-known leader in real estate investments, restructurings, strategic transactions and portfolio management as executive vice president for real estate, effective Tuesday.

Sesler will be charged with overseeing Macy’s real estate function and will spearhead high-priority initiatives to increase shareholder value through real estate strategies, including creating potential joint ventures or other partnerships involving the company flagship locations and mall-based properties.

He will report to Terry J. Lundgren, Macy’s chairman and chief executive officer, and will work closely with Macy’s Inc.’s investment banking advisors, including Eastdil Secured, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs. Sesler will be based in New York.

Macy’s has been under pressure to reverse slumping sales, innovate with new growth strategies and generate more productivity from its department stores. The $27 billion retailer is also being pressured by activist shareholders to get value out of its real estate holdings. Macy’s has been considering alternative uses for some of its retail real estate and joint ventures, and was said to be naming a top real estate executive.

“Doug Sesler is a world-class talent with a track record of success in developing, leading and implementing real estate strategies and transactions,” said Lundgren. “We will rely on his experience, expertise and discipline to create and structure real estate opportunities that will create shareholder value, sustain our long-term financial strength and enhance our retail business. We are fortunate to have an executive of Doug’s caliber at the helm of our real estate efforts.”

Most recently, Sesler was president of True Square Capital LLC, a real estate investment and advisory firm. Earlier he worked at Bank of America Merrill Lynch International Ltd. in such roles as global head of principal real estate investments and global cohead of real estate investment banking. Before that, he worked in a variety of roles at Citigroup and its predecessors, including as managing director of the global real estate investment banking group.

Macy’s operates around 870 stores in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico under the nameplates Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Bloomingdale’s Outlet, Macy’s Backstage and Bluemercury, as well as their Web sites. Bloomingdale’s in Dubai is operated by Al Tayer Group LLC under a license agreement.