Shopping Center Business

MAY 2016

Shopping Center Business is the leading monthly business magazine for the retail real estate industry.

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COVER STORY 126 • SHOPPING CENTER BUSINESS • May 2016 "We were a player in the B mall space, and that doesn't come close to the caliber of what we have purchased from West- field. This purchase really caused us to change the way we do business and how we do business. We now have to bring our business to the same level as the assets we now own," Levin says. The first move has been to beef up the company's executive team. Centennial hired Dan Sheridan, an industry veter- an who has held senior executive posi- tions with Irvine Company and General Growth Properties, as chief operating officer. Jim Davis was hired as manag- ing director of national leasing. Mark Thorsen was hired as senior vice presi- dent of asset management and Deborah Georgetti-Piro was hired as senior vice president of business development. Each of these executives has more than 20 years in the regional mall industry. "To be frank, putting together a strong team has been as challenging as buying the assets," Levin says. FOCUS ON ENHANCEMENT Centennial Real Estate purchased five centers from Westfield for $1.1 billion. Each center has a captive market. They were: • Connecticut Post Mall in Milford, Connecticut. The 1.3 million-square-foot center is anchored by JC Penney, Macy's, Sears, Target, Dick's Sporting Goods and a 14-screen Rave/Cinemark Theatre. • Fox Valley Mall in Aurora, Illinois. The 1.5 million-square-foot mall is anchored by Carson Pirie Scott, Sears, Macy's and JC Penney. • Hawthorn Mall in Vernon Hills, Illi- nois. The 1.3 million-square-foot center is anchored by Carson Pirie Scott, Sears, JC Penney, Macy's and a 12-screen movie theater. • Vancouver Mall in Vancouver, Wash- ington. The 883,000-square-foot center is anchored by JC Penney, Macy's, Sears, a 23-screen Cinetopia movie theater and Gold's Gym. • Main Place Mall in Santa Ana, Cali- fornia. The 1.1 million-square-foot center is anchored by Nordstrom, JC Penney, Macy's, Ashley Furniture Home Store, Round 1 Bowling and Amusement, 24 Hour Fitness and a six-screen movie theater. The centers total approximately 6 million square feet and were 97 percent leased at the time of sale. One big change for Centennial is that, for the first time in many years, the company is not pur- chasing assets that need some sort of turnaround. "These assets had been well taken care of," Levin says. "For us, these are the crown jewels of our portfolio." Centennial has positioned the centers — along with its three existing regional malls — as The Centennial Collection so it can proactively market its regional malls as a group to tenants and the industry. The real opportunity in the centers, Levin says, is adding the experience component that has become so important to physical shopping destinations over the past few years. "The experience part of our business — the theaters, food, restaurants, social interaction and entertainment — is some- thing that we are immediately expanding The food court at Centennial's Pueblo Mall in Pueblo, Colorado. Like many of Centennial's centers, Pueblo Mall is the dominant retail center in the market. Fox Valley Mall in Aurora, Illinois, is anchored by JC Penney, Macy's, Sears and Carson Pirie Scott. The center serves a large trade area in the West Chicago suburbs.

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