KIMCO IN THE NEWS: Q1 2013 RECAP
Local and national media outlets have continued to feature Kimco’s news and commentary on the retail and REIT markets. Here’s a roundup of some noteworthy Q1 coverage.
Retailers betting on healthy options for consumers
Our Suburban Square lifestyle center on Philadelphia’s Main Line proved to be an ideal example of the growing demand for healthy retailers. In a USA Today feature, Kimco’s Mid-Atlantic President Tom Simmons explained why shopping centers have seen a surge in healthy tenants, including workout centers, frozen yogurt stores, and farmers markets. Suburban Square’s General Manager, Mark Bachus, led cameras on a tour of the property, pointing out retailers such as Sweetgreen, New Balance, City Sports, and lululemon.
Local paper, the Ardmore Patch, also highlighted the center’s influx of healthier tenants, including the newest addition to Suburban Square’s tenant roster, frozen yogurt shop Fruitti Yummi.
More health care providers fill retail space
Retailers are not the only shopping center tenants now focusing on the consumer’s well-being. Josh Weinkranz spoke with Times Union about the diverse mix of medical tenants Kimco has acquired at our retail properties, including satellite hospital locations, dialysis centers, and urgent care facilities. He also explained to The Record why health care providers are moving next to grocery stores and restaurants to provide their patients with the greater convenience.
These health care tenants can provide more accessibility to medical services, help shopping centers fill space vacated by businesses that went under during the recession, and generate extra foot traffic overall.
Kimco KEYS success stories continue to grow
Our KEYS program continues to help crank out new small businesses, filling our storefronts with retailers well-positioned for growth. Stay-at-home father Rudy Gonzales recently opened Build-It Workshops in Carlsbad, Calif., where parents and children can work together to build their own creations. The Santee Patch featured Build-It Workshops’ grand opening celebration and emphasized that the studio encourages learning by making activities fun and engaging.
Comic Book Hideout is another kid-friendly KEYS tenant that recently opened its doors. The Fullerton Observer covered Comic Book Hideout’s opening, with owner Glynnes Pruett giving a peek into her eclectic comic book store in Fullerton, Calif., that also hosts movie and game nights.
Greater sustainability comes to retail
A wave of news was sparked when Kimco launched its new corporate responsibility website focused on the programs we’re developing and implementing to improve our portfolio’s environmental and economic performance. GlobeSt.com spoke with Will Teichman, our Director of Sustainability, about the push to embrace energy efficiency in retail, employee volunteerism, and developing a property efficiency scorecard for retail properties.
Will also sat down with REIT.com to discuss how sustainability in retail differs from other sectors. He addressed the importance of fostering greater landlord-tenant collaboration on projects that will benefit both parties. Kimco will be sharing more details on its new sustainability efforts when we publish a Global Reporting Initiative corporate responsibility report in 2014.
Major new Kimco partnerships
The Wall Street Journal covered Kimco’s role in Blackstone Group’s high-profile buyout of 40 shopping centers. Our share of the portfolio increased from 18 percent to 33 percent in the new partnership with Blackstone. Kimco CEO David Henry labeled the properties “very high quality assets.”
In another major deal, Kimco partnered with an investment consortium to acquire five grocery operating banners from SUPERVALU, Inc., including Albertsons, Jewel-Osco, Star Markets, Acme, and Shaws, totaling 877 grocery stores. The move reunites the Albertsons chain under single ownership, which the same investment consortium acquired back in 2006 and resulted in Kimco recognizing a profit of nearly five times its original investment.
Acquisitions help enhance Kimco’s portfolio quality
Kimco has also made significant headway in our continuing efforts to strengthen our portfolio through strategic acquisitions. National Real Estate Investor reported on our buyout of Santee Trolley Square, located in the San Diego region. We acquired full ownership of the shopping center, which has a 98 percent occupancy rate and strong national retailers, such as PetSmart, Starbucks, Chipotle, and Bed Bath & Beyond.
Kimco also purchased the second half of the Wilton River Park complex in Wilton, Conn., after acquiring the first part six months prior. This new purchase included the Wilton Executive Campus and Shoppes, an 187,000-square-foot mixed-use property, which was directly adjacent to Wilton Campus Shops. Wilton River Park serves as a town center for the affluent area known as Connecticut’s “Gold Coast,” and is a perfect model for the types of properties we hope to continue adding to our portfolio. Several media covered the acquisition, including Wilton Daily Voice, Wilton Bulletin, and Stamford Advocate.
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