REAL ESTATE

Renaissance Place and City seek use for former Saks

BY Michael Fickes

Highland Park, Ill. — Executives with Renaissance Place are working with officials from the City of Highland Park, Ill., to identify the best use for a 49,000-sq.-ft. building that Saks vacated at the close of 2012.

One possible use is healthcare, which may involve interventional cardiology, MRI/radiology and other outpatient services. The Renaissance Place team is also considering national, regional and local retailers.

Uses that have been ruled out include boutique hotel, residential, art center and not-for-profit entity. None of these possibilities is considered economically practical.

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REAL ESTATE

Milan Capital buys Simi Valley shopping center

BY Michael Fickes

Simi Valley, Calif. — Milan Capital Management has acquired the Smart & Final Center in Simi Valley, Calif., for $16.9 million — $170 per square foot Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services represented Milan Capital and the seller, who had owned the property for 45 years.

Marcus & Millichap Capital Corp. arranged an interim refinancing of the seller’s existing conduit debt with a $7.5 million flexible bridge loan that permitted repayment without penalty. That mortgage was retired at closing with a new loan arranged by Milan Capital Management, providing leverage and construction money. The new owner anticipates undertaking a complete renovation including an expansion and extension of the anchor tenant’s lease.

Smart & Final, Tri-Counties Region Center, Theresa’s Country Feed, Pet and the Simi Valley Hospital anchor the 99,662-sq.-ft. center.

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FINANCE

Survey: Retailers show cautious optimism for holidays

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Francisco – U.S. retailers are showing cautious optimism for the upcoming holiday shopping season. According to a survey of 77 U.S, retailers in July 2013 with annual revenue of less than $20 million to $5 billion by e-commerce technology provider Baynote, 38% of respondents project an 11 to 20% year-over-year increase in online sales, with 22% predicting an increase of 21% or more.

In addition, 53% of respondents expect mobile transactions to account for a significant part of holiday revenue and 38% believe mobile will drive renewed in-store interest that will lead to increased revenue.

Furthermore, retailers plan to offer promotions, such as flash sales, buy-one-get-one free offers and free shipping, at selective times throughout the holiday season. Thirty percent of retailers will begin promotions prior to October 1; more than 40% of retailers will wait until early November.

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