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ATLANTA-IRT Property Co., an Atlanta-based retail developer for 30 years with a portfolio of 92 properties totaling 10 million sf, is being sold to Miami-based Equity One Inc. in a stock-debt deal aggregately valued at $730 million. The deal includes $297 million of IRT debt and is expected to close by year end.

Equity One will own 181 properties totaling 18.7 million sf after the deal closes. The REIT will have a $1.56 billion total market capitalization and a $766 million equity market capitalization.

Each IRT shareholder may decide to take $12.15 per share in cash or 0.9 shares of Equity One common stock, or a combination of the two options, IRT principals said in a conference call today outlining its third-quarter earnings. Holders of no more than 50% of IRT’s outstanding common may receive cash.

IRT valued the deal at $730 million based on a New York Stock Exchange closing price Oct. 28 of $13.59 per IRT share and the assumption of a 50% cash election, the company says in a prepared statement.

“IRT and Equity One operate in the same region and focus on the same asset class,” Equity One chairman/CEO Chaim Katzman says in the same statement. “This transaction will more than double our shopping-center portfolio and will create one of the largest retail REITs focused on the Southeast, solidifying our leadership in the supermarket-anchored shopping-center sector.”

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