BAKERSFIELD, CA—Vallarta Supermarkets, one of the region’s largest grocery chains catering to the Hispanic market, has purchased a neighborhood center in Bakersfield, Calif., for $14 million, where it will now become both the anchor tenant and the center’s owner, according to Colliers International’s Commercial Investment Services Group.

Known as The Grove and totaling 100,756 square feet, the center was a victim of the recession and left unfinished by its original and now-bankrupt developer. Tom Lagos and El Warner of Colliers International’s downtown Los Angeles office were retained by the court-appointed bankruptcy receiver sell the property.

“This is another example of a growing trend among regional grocery chains owning the centers that they anchor,” said Lagos. “By doing so, they can control co-tenancy and reap profits down the road from owning the real estate.”

On its developed portion, current tenants, in addition to a 42,000-square-foot Vallarta

Supermarket site, include a free-standing, drive-through McDonald’s Restaurant, a Subway

Sandwich shop, and an AT&T Wireless store. Family Dollar will be a co-anchor on the site when it takes occupancy of a 9,000-square-foot location now under construction.

“We received tremendous interest on this sale and our marketing efforts yielded 14

initial offers from qualified investors,” said Lagos “Through the competitive nature of the bidding process, the value was driven approximately 10% over our initial projections.”

 Ultimately, Vallarta Supermarkets, which had the right of first refusal on acquiring the center, exercised that right and smartly made the purchase, Lagos noted. The center is located on busy Panama Lane, which also houses such well-known national and regional retailers as Lowes, Wal-Mart, In-n-Out, and Starbucks on neighboring sites.