"Strong and eventful." That’s how Dave Henry described Kimco’s second quarter during our recent investor call.

FFO as adjusted increased by 12.9 percent and our operating metrics were very strong: U.S. same-site NOI grew 4.2 percent (the biggest year-over-year jump in six years and Kimco’s 13th consecutive quarter of rising NOI), U.S. leasing spreads were up double digits, and occupancy continued to rise. See reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures in our second quarter earnings release.

As a result of our second quarter numbers, we revised upward our full-year guidance on FFO as adjusted and combined same-property NOI.

We continue to be bullish on 2013 for several reasons. First, the fundamentals of supply and demand are in our favor. As Dave Henry discussed during our earnings call, on the demand side, planned new store openings are at a five-year high, with more than 80,000 new stores expected to open in the next two years. New supply, on the other hand, is at a 35-year low. Instead of traditional growth of 2 percent a year, the current growth rate of new retail space is only about 1/10 of 1 percent. Any significant increase in new shopping center development remains at least a few years away. These conditions should continue to serve as a catalyst for rising rents and higher occupancy for Kimco.

Second, the economy keeps on improving, as the housing market rebounds, and consumer spending and retail sales are on the rise. Third, we continue to see the benefits of managing our portfolio for greater growth and value. Since the third quarter of 2010, we’ve sold 121 properties for approximately $900 million and bought 66 higher quality properties in better markets for about $1.5 billion.

This quarter saw important transaction activity. We sold InTown Suites and other non-retail properties as we continue to move toward focusing exclusively on retail. We divested nine Mexican shopping centers, as we concentrate more and more on our core U.S. markets. And we continued to buy out our joint venture partners, as they seek to monetize their investments and we seek to simplify our ownership structure.

We have the financial wherewithal, thanks to our available liquidity, proceeds from asset sales, and our successful debt refinancings, to take advantage of new acquisition opportunities. One of our focus areas is to reinvest capital within our current portfolio of nearly 750 U.S. properties and rapidly expand our redevelopment pipeline. Our plan is to invest three-quarters of a billion dollars over the next several years to enhance the value of these shopping centers while achieving double-digit returns.

Add to this our focus on technology, sustainability, and creativity as we seek new ways to add value for our retail partners and increase the income we derive from our shopping centers, and you have a solid recipe for current and future success.