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WARREN, MI-Ferguson Express, a unit of Newport News, VA-based Ferguson Enterprises Inc., has upped its Michigan presence to five locations with the signing of a five-year, 3,300-sf lease at the 30,000-sf King Plaza, an inline retail strip center. The company, a plumbing products supplier, will open its newest outlet, located on 28716 Ryan Rd., during the first quarter of 2006.

Larry Howard of Howard Realty Group represented the landlord, Utica-based HDH Properties, LLC. The quoted lease rate is $12 per sf triple net, annually, with TIs separate. The tenant’s representative, Larry Siedell, retail associate with the retail division of Insite Commercial Group/TCN Worldwide’s Southfield office, indicated another lease for Ferguson is pending in Bay City.

“They’ll be going into a holding pattern for a couple of months, while they test out new concepts,” explains Siedell, who with Insite colleague Tjader Gerdom, is the exclusive representative for Ferguson in Michigan. They also work in conjunction with the tenant’s national broker, GVA DAUM, on the transactions.

Siedell tells GlobeSt.com that Ferguson, one of the nation’s largest plumbing supply companies, began as a supplier to larger stores but moved into its own retail outlets and is expanding into other concepts as well. “They have warehouses in the US that are 100,000 sf and showrooms that are 12,000 sf to 20,000 sf, but this express concept is still new,” Siedell says.

He says that the preferred properties for a typical Ferguson Express outlet are end-cap and inline spaces and freestanding buildings measuring between 3,500 sf and 4,500 sf, with 12-foot ceilings. He says the company is strongest in established markets, rather than in just developing or newer areas.

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