PARIS-French-Dutch REIT Unibail-Rodamco, the largest listedproperty company in Europe, plans to sell $3.5 billion in assetsduring the next two years as it continues to adjust its portfolioto focus on large shopping centers.

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At the time of first half results, the group said it sold $1.7billion of assets in the first half of the year, with a further$703 million of disposals expected in second half 2010. A spokesmansaid an additional $3.5 billion of asset sales is planned for 2011and 2012 but declined to confirm reports that BNP Paribas CorporateFinance has been mandated to handle the disposals.

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The additional sales program would cover 42 shopping mallstotaling seven million square feet that Unibail is looking to sellin a single block. The group previously said it aims to hold only80-100 of its most profitable shopping malls by 2012. Since the2007 merger of Unibail and Rodamco, it has sold some $5.6 billionof assets and cut the number of malls to 124 from 278. Itsportfolio of shopping centres, offices and convention-exhibitionvenues was valued at $32.8 billion at the end of June. The assetsales carried out so far have enabled the group to return $2.5billion to shareholders. A shareholders' meeting on Sept. 8approved plans for a $28 per share capital reimbursement, to bepaid on Oct. 12.

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AllanSaunderson is a managing editorof PropertyInvestor Europe and a contributor toGlobeSt.com.

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