August 29, 2022

Boyle Talks: Boyle Announces Matt Hayden as President & CEO

Gary: I’m Gary Thompson and welcome to another edition of Boyle Talks. Today, we’ll be talking with Matt Hayden who is currently our CFO, but this is going to be a very special episode of Boyle Talks. We’re here to announce today that Matt is not our CFO, now he is our president and CEO of Boyle Investment Company. Congratulations, Matt!

Matt: Thank you Gary. I’m just humbled and honored for this promotion. I’ve been at the company for a little over eight years, and it’s just been a great company to work for and I’m super excited…and like I said, humbled and honored to be here.

Gary: You’re the first non-family member to be the president of Boyle in our, almost, 90-year history. So this is a big deal!

Matt: I’m very honored to be here and in my career I started out at Ernst & Young here in Memphis, now known as EY. I started that in 2000 and worked on audits and in a number of industries–primarily financial institutions and banks — and actually worked on the Boyle audit at the time. I spent three years there and had a really good experience, but left the public accounting world and went into investment banking with Morgan Keegan. Morgan Keegan was a great experience. I spent nine years there. In the investment banking world I was doing merger and acquisition advisory, primarily in financial services, transportation logistics, and a little bit of real estate. I gained a lot of experience in different companies. But after nine years there, I left and went to Wunderlich Securities, another Memphis firm, spent two years there until 2014 when I joined Boyle.

Gary: It has sort of been a whirlwind since you got here. You replaced our old CFO, who was legendary. Big shoes to fill, but you just came in and fit right in. Tell us about what all has happened since you got here and the things that you’ve done.

Matt: Charles Claiborne, who was our CFO for 35+ years, was looking to retire, so he set out to find a replacement and luckily I happened to be at the right place at the right time and had the opportunity to join Boyle. I joined as deputy treasurer. We had a couple of major projects to undertake at the time, one being putting in a new accounting and financial system and a property management system. At the time, we had two different systems. One was for our accounting and one was for property management. So we switched to what is known as Yardi Systems and are still with that today.

Gary: You came in and made a big difference in our accounting department and our sales and leasing department. You work not only with our Memphis office, but also our Nashville office–which has grown precipitously in 20 years.

Matt: Absolutely!

Gary: You’ve been a part of that almost for half that.

Matt: Charles was extremely gracious in that he stayed here for over five years. This was not a short term transition. We called it long-term transition. He basically, over time, transitioned a lot of the CFO duties to me. But one of the things I learned in investment banking was that I love deals and transactions. So, getting back into that world was exciting, and I started helping our Memphis and Nashville teams on development projects and major leasing transactions. We also have a Midsouth Capital Fund, and I started analyzing things on that. We made five property acquisitions, two dispositions and one spin out. Actually three dispositions. Just getting back in the deal world was interesting to me. It was something I thought I would miss, but it happened to be that we have a lot going on here… as you know.

Gary: You mentioned that you’re hiring in your position here at Boyle was part of a succession plan. And that’s been going on the entire time you’ve been with the company. Your promotion is also part of the continuing succession plan as the family members get older, as the company presidents and senior vice president executives… all of that group is getting older. Tell us, you know, the company is now moving into almost its 90th anniversary next year. Where do you see the company going? What are your plans for the future? Give us your vision as the new CEO and president.

Matt: It’s very important, this is a huge milestone…90 years. I kind of set sites to 100 years in 2030. As part of this transition, our accounting team is in great hands. We have a nearly 40 year employee, Debbie Shelton, and a new hire that we hired last year, Bo Lessley, who has been here approximately a year. It’s in great hands in our accounting group. So, I think my future role will be to work with the Boyle and Morgan families to analyze how we allocate capital, the markets that we’re in in Memphis and Nashville, new property acquisitions, property dispositions, loan refinancing, and just really setting part of the strategic vision for the future–which I don’t think is a huge change from what we’ve been doing for 90 years.

Gary: Right!

Matt: It’s just about keeping up with the current times, the changes in the real estate markets. One of the things we’ve seen in Nashville is that most of these projects are large, mixed-use, very complex projects. They’re not as simple as they’ve been in the past, so it’s just about analyzing this and determining where we want to invest dollars in the future and how to grow stronger over the next ten years as we reach 100 years old.

Gary: The Boyle family and the Morgan family have been around for a long time. Their roots go all the way back to the formation of Memphis and Overton. They’ve been a great corporate citizen. Sounds like the future is really bright for us to continue to be a great business here in Memphis and our expansion in Nashville. We just want to be community players. Can you speak to that issue a little bit?

Matt: Absolutely! What I would say is, the Memphis history goes back over 90 years, but in Nashville we’ve had an office for a little over 20 years and they’ve carefully selected the markets they’ve gone into. We’ve got an excellent team there and they’ve had a major, positive impact on that community–just as Boyle has over the last 90 years and into the future. So it’s very important for us to maintain that. We’re not passive real estate investors. We like to touch and feel and know the communities and properties that we’re investing in, and that’s an important part of the culture here. I think that’s why we have such long-term employees and people that really like being here.

Gary: Right, because we own properties. We invest and then own them and maintain them and lease them and rent them for long periods of time. Which is a little different than traditional, particularly more in the Nashville market, than Memphis. But, ownership mentality is something that we bring to every project that we work on.

Matt: That is correct. Whether we’re a third-party manager or we own one hundred percent of a particular building or asset, we take pride in knowing and treating it like it’s ours. We don’t want to impact communities in a negative way at all. We always want to have a positive impact and that’s something that has been done here in Memphis for 90+ years and has been done in Nashville for over 20. We want to continue to do that going forward.

Gary: I know one of the reasons why I like working here and why I have been here as long as I have is because the family has such integrity. They want to do the right thing. They always want their employees to do the right thing. Just to treat people nice and properly. That’s going to continue.

Matt: It absolutely will. One of the things I’ll be doing is working closely with Paul, Henry Morgan Jr., Bayard Morgan, and their fathers, of course. This culture has been something that withstood a long period of time. That’s why we have such longtime employees, and that’s something we definitely want to continue. This is a great honor for me. I want to continue to do what I’m doing. I don’t see the culture of the company changing at all. I see us just trying to continue that in the future the best way we can.

Gary: Matt, thank you for joining me today on Boyle Talks. This is exciting news, and congratulations on your new promotion. I can’t wait to see where you take the company, and I think it’s only bright days ahead.

Matt: Thanks so much, Gary! I really appreciate it.

Gary: You bet, and thank you for joining us today on another episode of Boyle Talks.


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