(For more retail coverage, click GlobeSt.com/RETAIL.)

FARMINGTON HILLS, MI-During a third quarter conference call with investors Wednesday, Dennis Gershenson, president and CEO of locally based Ramco-Gershenson Properties Trust, said the company would “continue to sell non-core and limited assets with limited upside potential, and refinancing assets that had been expanded or renovated.”

Furthermore, he added, the goal for 2006 will be to spend $300 million for acquisitions. “I’m assuming that the vast majority of those will be joint-venture acquisitions,” he said, “but there are at least one or two we’re viewing right now that we might acquire on the balance sheet.”

In the meantime, he noted that the approximately 1.29-million-sf portfolio that Ramco-Gershenson has put up for sale is receiving bids already. “We expect to be reviewing offers in early November,” he says. “We’ve made available, for sale, up to nine assets, but we’re committed to selling at least seven.”

Gershenson said during the third quarter the 30,153-sf Beacon Square in Grand Haven, MI and 367,296-sf Gaines Marketplace in Gaines Township, MI were completed. Additionally, Home Depot signed an 11.64-acre ground lease at Taylor Plaza in Taylor, MI, and a 30,000 sf was added to Jackson Crossing, in Jackson, MI.

“Each of these value-added expansions increases the net asset value, improves tenant mix and increases net operating income,” Gershenson says.

In examining the overall occupancy rate across Ramco-Gershenson’s entire portfolio, Gershenson noted that the overall occupancy rate of 93.5% needs to be examined in the light of two major vacancies created in Tel-Twelve Mall on Telegraph Road in Southfield, MI–that of Circuit City and Media Play retail outlets. However, he noted, “we’ll be announcing replacement tenants for both of these newly created vacancies before year’s end.” The overall occupancy goal for the entire portfolio by the end of the year is 95%.

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