REAL ESTATE

Vornado ups stake in J.C. Penney

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Plano, Texas — J.C. Penney Co. said Monday in a regulatory filing that it has allowed shopping center owner Vornado Realty Trust to increase its stake in the department store retailer, from 9.9% to 15.4%.

The move eases a poison-pill restriction that had prevented Vornado from previously buying additional J.C. Penney shares. It mirrors a deal struck with Penney’s largest shareholder William Ackman, who received the go-ahead to up his stake, held through his Pershing Square Capital Management hedge fund, from 16.5% to as much as 26.1%.

Vornado holds a seat on J.C. Penney’s board, as does Ackman.

J.C. Penney has not said whether Vornado had concrete plans to add to its stake. The retailer said in the filing that Vornado is barred under the agreement from purchasing additional shares until Oct. 10.

The moves come as J.C. Penney is preparing to change chief executives. Effective Nov. 1, Myron "Mike" Ullman will be replaced by Ronald Johnson, the architect of Apple Inc.’s retail stores. Ullman will serve as executive chairman of the chain until Feb. 1.

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REAL ESTATE

Rose Paving Co. completes parking lot improvements for 7-Eleven

BY Staff Writer

Bridgeview, Ill. — Rose Paving Co. has completed a major parking lot enhancement program at 7-Eleven locations in the northeastern United States. The project, which involved 970,463 sq. ft. of space, spanned the course of five weeks. Work ranged from two-inch mill and overlay to full parking lot reconstruction at more than 75 7-Eleven stores in Maryland, New Jersey, and Virginia — all while stores remained open.

Rose Paving was contracted by Powerhouse Retail Services, which managed these renovations for the world’s largest convenience retailer. Remodels for the more than 1,000 7-Eleven stores on the East Coast included, in some cases, upgrades to both building interiors and exteriors. Rose Paving performed all parking lot repairs in two phases to keep stores fully operating while the work was done. Parking lot sizes varied from 5,000 sq. ft. to 25,000 sq. ft.

“Our national purchasing power was instrumental in making this overhaul a success,” said David Rivers, Rose Paving director of national operations. “7-Eleven saw the value in completing paving improvements to multiple properties at once, rather than as individual projects occurring separately over time, which helped to save money on materials and resources.”

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REAL ESTATE

Starbucks to expand in Latin America

BY Staff Writer

New York City — Starbucks Coffee Co. plans to expand in Latin America after concentrating in recent past years more on Asia, founder and CEO Howard Schultz said at a presentation in Madrid, Bloomberg reported.

The chain as about $2 billion in cash to invest in an “aggressive and opportunistic way,” Schultz said, and is especially interested in Brazil, according to the report.

The CEO also said he is “more optimistic” about the company than ever before, and that Starbucks will be “opportunistic and aggressive” seeking growth.

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