CLEVELAND, Feb. 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Forest City Realty Trust, Inc., (NYSE: FCEA and FCEB) today announced the creation of a previously disclosed joint venture with QIC, one of the largest institutional investment managers in Australia, under which QIC acquired 51 percent equity ownership of Westchester's Ridge Hill, a 1.3 million-square-foot regional mall developed by Forest City in Yonkers, New York. Forest City retained 49 percent equity ownership and expects to receive total proceeds from creation of the joint venture of approximately $90 million. The transaction also includes a provision under which Forest City has the opportunity to receive additional proceeds based on the center's future performance. Proceeds from the transaction will be used primarily to pay down debt as part of the company's ongoing deleveraging program.
"Our strategic joint ventures with QIC have been a great success to date, as seen in the strong performance of our mall portfolio," said David J. LaRue, Forest City president and chief executive officer. "Expanding the joint ventures to include Westchester's Ridge Hill now, as well as the expected additions later this year of Ballston Quarter (formerly Ballston Common Mall) and The Shops at Wiregrass, is a natural extension of this mutually beneficial relationship. Through the joint ventures, we are able to further improve the centers in the portfolio and leverage our collective experience and expertise to maximize value and enhance the retail experience for both tenants and customers."
Separately, Forest City also announced that it has entered into a fully executed lease with home-improvement retailer Lowe's for a new location at Ridge Hill of approximately 100,000 square feet in size, including an exterior garden center, with anticipated opening in the fourth quarter of 2016.
In addition to Ridge Hill, Forest City currently has joint ventures with QIC at eight other regional malls: Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga, California; Charleston Town Center in Charleston, West Virginia; Mall at Robinson near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Promenade in Temecula, California; Galleria at Sunset in Henderson, Nevada; Antelope Valley Mall in Palmdale, California; Short Pump Town Center in Richmond, Virginia; and South Bay Galleria in Redondo Beach, California.
Two additional Forest City retail centers, Ballston Quarter in Arlington, Virginia, and The Shops at Wiregrass in Wesley Chapel, Florida, near Tampa, are expected to become joint ventures with QIC by the end of the first quarter of 2016.
About Forest City
Forest City Realty Trust, Inc. is an NYSE-listed national real estate company with $10.0 billion in total assets. The company is principally engaged in the ownership, development, management and acquisition of commercial and residential real estate and land throughout the United States. For more information, visit www.forestcity.net.
Safe Harbor Language
Statements made in this news release that state the company's or management's intentions, hopes, beliefs, expectations or predictions of the future are forward-looking statements. The company's actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements due to various risks, uncertainties and other factors. Risks and factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, its ability to remain qualified as a REIT, the possibility that the anticipated benefits of qualifying as a REIT will not be realized, or will not be realized within the expected time period, its inability to meet expectations regarding the accounting and tax treatments of qualifying as a REIT, the impact of issuing equity, debt or both to satisfy its E&P Distribution and any other future distributions it is required to make as a REIT, the impact of the amount and timing of any future distributions, the impact of covenants that would prevent it from satisfying REIT distribution requirements, its lack of experience operating as a REIT, legislative, administrative, regulatory or other actions affecting real estate investment trusts, including positions taken by the Internal Revenue Service, the effect on the market price of its common stock following its conversion to REIT status and the E&P Distribution, the impact to its deferred tax liability balance upon conversion to REIT status, the impact of current lending and capital market conditions on its liquidity, its ability to finance or refinance projects or repay its debt, the impact of the slow economic recovery on its ownership, development and management of its commercial real estate portfolio, general real estate investment and development risks, using modular construction as a new construction methodology and owning a factory to produce modular units, vacancies in its properties, risks associated with developing and managing properties in partnership with others, downturns in the housing market, competition, illiquidity of real estate investments, bankruptcy or defaults of tenants, anchor store consolidations or closings, international activities, the impact of terrorist acts and other armed conflicts, its substantial debt leverage and the ability to obtain and service debt, the impact of restrictions imposed by its credit facility and senior debt, exposure to hedging agreements, the level and volatility of interest rates, the continued availability of tax-exempt government financing, the impact of credit rating downgrades, effects of uninsured or underinsured losses, effects of a downgrade or failure of its insurance carriers, environmental liabilities, conflicts of interest, risks associated with the sale of tax credits, the ability to maintain effective internal controls, compliance with governmental regulations, increased legislative and regulatory scrutiny of the financial services industry, changes in federal, state or local tax laws, volatility in the market price of its publicly traded securities, inflation risks, litigation risks, cybersecurity risks, cyber incidents, its ability to achieve its strategic goals are based on significant assumptions, and its ability to complete non-core asset sales, as well as other risks listed from time to time in the company's SEC filings, including but not limited to, the company's annual and quarterly reports.
SOURCE Forest City Realty Trust, Inc.