REAL ESTATE

Donahue Schriber acquires its fifth property in 12 months

BY Melonie Messina

Alamo, Calif. — Donahue Schriber Realty Group announced that it acquired Alamo Plaza located in Alamo, California from Investco Advisors late 2015.

The 195,147 sq. ft. shopping center is anchored by Safeway and features Rite-Aid, 24 Hour Fitness, Richards Arts and Crafts, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Panera Bread, and more.

“Donahue Schriber is so pleased to be the new owner of Alamo Plaza. We look forward to serving the community and adding to the already strong tenant mix. The property was a natural fit for Donahue Schriber as we continue to seek prime grocery/drug anchored centers in high barriers to entry locations from San Diego to Seattle,” said Chairman and CEO, Pat Donahue for Donahue Schriber.

Alamo Plaza was Donahue Schriber’s fifth acquisition of 2015. Other recent purchases include Gilman District in Berkeley, California; Village Oaks Shopping Center in San Jose, California; Lakeland Town Center in Auburn, Washington; and Interbay Urban Center in Seattle.

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REAL ESTATE

Irvine Company announces a major $150 million reinvestment

BY Melonie Messina

Irvine, Calif. — Irvine Company announced a major $150 million reinvestment in Irvine Spectrum Center located in Irvine, California, in the heart of Irvine Spectrum, a mixed-use community that provides a balanced district of retail, office, and living space.

The reinvestment will feature more than 20 new stores located within two new buildings on the current site of Macy’s, which announced earlier this week the closure of 40 stores nationwide, including the one at Irvine Spectrum Center. Additional upgrades will include new landscaping, outdoor seating and shade areas, state-of-the-art amenities, and circulation and parking-garage improvements.

“The Macy’s closing has been contemplated for months and has provided us with a unique opportunity to rebalance Irvine Spectrum Center with additional retail stores to ensure that it continues as one of Southern California’s premier shopping, dining and entertainment lifestyle destinations,” said Easther Liu, CMO for Irvine Company Retail Properties. “As a master-planning company and long-term owner, we are always exploring how we evolve Irvine Spectrum Center’s vibrancy and relevancy to marry with our customers’ evolving tastes.”

Irvine officials noted they will announce some of the key retailers going into the new buildings over the coming year, emphasizing that the stores will complement and enhance the current tenant mix that includes: Nordstrom, Target, H&M, Apple Store, Anthropologie, lululemon athletica, Forever 21, Brandy Melville and Hurley | Nike SB, in addition to restaurants such as Javier’s, CUCINA enoteca, P.F. Chang’s, Cheesecake Factory, Del Frisco’s Grille, Tender Greens, BRIO Tuscan Grille and IMAX theater.

Between 2014 and 2015, the Irvine Company invested more than $40 million in Irvine Spectrum Center, which added approximately 57,000 sq. ft. of space to bring in new retail stores and restaurants, including Sports Authority, TLT Food, Del Frisco’s Grille, BRIO Tuscan Grille, Kona Grill, as well as relocating and expanding Improv Comedy Club.

In addition the center completed a retrofit of its Giant Wheel (with 12,500 standard bulbs replaced with more than 52,000 energy-efficient LED lights capable of a dazzling 16 million different color schemes), parking garage enhancements and improvements to the “ring road” and Spectrum Center Drive.

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FINANCE

The Container Store reports loss on higher expenses

BY Gina Acosta

The Container Store is cutting its guidance for the year after the company says expenses led it to report a loss in the third quarter.

The Texas-based retailer said same store sales in the quarter were also disappointing: a 0.5% increase compared to the third quarter of fiscal 2014.

“Our key initiatives are gaining momentum, which is encouraging as we position our company for sustained, long-term growth,” said Kip Tindell, chairman and CEO. “However, we are very disappointed with our bottom line results for the third quarter. The shortfall versus our expectations was largely driven by expense items, the majority of which are non-recurring and unusual in nature. We have a history of strong fiscal discipline and expense management, which has always been a core competency, and in response to our third quarter we are increasing our efforts to reduce costs and improve selling, general, and administrative expenses, without harming the momentum of our TCS Closets initiative.”

The Container Sore had a third quarter loss of $1.7 million, or 4 cents a share, from a profit of $6.2 million, or 13 cents a share, a year earlier. The loss reflects 3 cents a share in expenses related to strategic initiatives, which was a cent higher than anticipated, the company said. Revenue increased to $197.2 million from $190.9 million a year ago.

“Overall, we were pleased to see continued improvement in our comparable store sales performance in the third quarter, with much of the improvement directly attributable to TCS Closets and elfa," Tindell said. "Unfortunately, the start to the fourth quarter has been more challenging, which we have reflected in our revised outlook. We have now completed the rollout of our top three strategic initiatives, which were unprecedented in complexity for the company, and we are diligently focused on maximizing sales paired with expense management despite some unpredictability and additional expenses that impacted our results in the third quarter. We planned fiscal year 2015 as an investment year and remain steadfast in our belief that the investment is essential to maximizing the potential of these initiatives.”

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