CHICAGO-As GlobeSt.com reported Tuesday, Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group has made a $10-billion offer to acquire locally-based General Growth Properties. This move will merge the top two retail-focused companies in the country, creating a company with more than 520 assets.

However, this is not a done deal, according to Ryan Thomas, a partner at Bass Berry & Sims PLC and expert in mergers and acquisitions of public and private companies. Since GGP is still trying to pull a number of assets out of bankruptcy, Simon will need court approval; as well as the approval of secured creditors and shareholders.

The creditors may be the easiest challenge. “The court will balance the interests of all creditors, including the secured creditors, and will consider the feasibility of the Simon transaction,” Thomas tells GlobeSt.com. “The secured creditors may support the transaction, unless they see an alternate path that enhances their collateral–or unless the Simon transaction somehow impairs their collateral.”

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