(Ian Ritter is national online editor for GlobeSt.com/RETAIL.)

CHEVY CHASE, MD-The Mills Corp. is selling its three fully developed foreign assets to Canadian mall owner Ivanhoe Cambridge for $981 million. The centers are Vaughan Mills, in Ontario, Canada; St. Enoch Centre, in Glasgow, Scotland; and Madrid (Spain) Xanadu.

The deal comes as Mills is in need of cash, as management said just last week that costs for its Meadowland Xanadu project in East Rutherford, NJ, would total about $2 billion, $500 million more than expected. After financial losses and accounting flaws, Mills has been up for sale.

Ivanhoe currently owns a 50% interest both Vaughan Mills and St. Enoch Centre. The two developed Vaughan in 2004 and acquired St. Enoch last year. Mills built Madrid Xanadu in 2003. Mills will have proceeds of about $500 million after paying off the costs of the projects. The deal values the three centers at $1.5 billion, according to a company statement. The parties say they expect to close the sale of all three properties by Sept. 20.

Ivanhoe Cambridge, based in Montreal, is one of the largest Canadian retail-property owners, with 65 regional and super-regional centers. The company also owns a handful of malls in the US and Europe and is pursuing development opportunities in Asia.

A Bank of America analyst report calls the sale of the centers “a step in the right direction” for Mills, but points out that the company still needs to raise another $600 million to $700 million to pay off a $1.9-billion loan it has with Goldman Sachs.

In June, Mills, the owner of 42 centers in North America and Europe, announced that it had received “interest from a variety of parties” in acquiring the company. Most recently management said that it has started work on the construction of the 265,000-sf retail portion of 108 North State St., a mixed-use development in Chicago.

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