Those who've known Tim Kane for some time recognize a look on his face.
It's the kind of joke you might repeat because it's so inanely simple, most often as
riotous to an 8-year-old as it would be to older people, and most often fine for mixed
company. And you keep on wondering what he does to it that makes you laugh, every
Kane, who has led MBK Homes, a diversified U.S. unit of Tokyo-based Mitsui & Co.,
Ltd., as its president and CEO for 14 years, and has worked there for 21, will put in his
last day at the headquarters offices in Irvine, Calif., tomorrow, March 31. It won't be an
April Fool's eve prank, and very likely, his beloved executive team and company
associates will be laughing through their tears.
Tim Kane, like many of his home building's entrepreneurial peers, worked at MBK as
though it was a second family writ large. With the longview support and guidance of
MBK's 400-year-old Japanese parent company executives, Kane navigated MBK
through the darkest days of the Great Recession profitably, reducing the balance sheet,
focusing on opportunistic infill tracts in SoCal's land- and housing-constrained markets.
And, in the vanguard of the market turn, Kane introduced the company to its one of its
now more successful core strategies in multifamily rental development, ahead of the
multifamily juggernaut. Since, MBK has diversified its real estate development portfolio
into MBK Senior Living and MBK Retail, given the California infill marketplace's
propensity for mixed-use and integrated properties.
Noted for articulate, sharply defined vision as an operator, Tim Kane served as one of
our Hive "discovery panel" perspectives in the inaugural Hive event in Los Angeles last
September. He's always said that as a going concern in U.S. residential real estate, he's
enjoyed ongoing operational and financial support from his parent company, a luxury
few other private home builders could draw upon during the dislocation of the Great