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CHICAGO-General Growth Properties, Inc.’s $1.1-billion acquisition of Utah-based JP Realty, Inc. has closed, adding 13.7 million sf to a retail portfolio that now covers about 135 million sf. The JP Realty portfolio is expected to yield a 10% return for General Growth, who looked at the deal as “good old-fashioned opportunity to make money.”

General Growth put up $440 million in cash, assumes $576 million in debt, while JP Realty stockholders get $26.10 per share.

General Growth also acquires 1.3 million sf of industrial space, most of it in the Salt Lake City market.

Although sales in the JP Realty portfolio have averaged $260 per sf, about $100 per sf less than the rest of General Growth’s holdings, officials of the second-largest US retail REIT viewed the deal as a way to enter Mountain States markets in Arizona, California, Idaho, New Mexico and Washington.

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