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

OAK BROOK, IL-Developers Diversified Realty is buying the 307-center Inland Retail Real Estate Trust portfolio for $6.2 billion. Cleveland-based DDR is paying $14 per share in cash and assuming $2.3 billion of debt in the deal.

An institutional investor, whose name was not revealed, is joining DDR on the deal, acquiring 67 of the assets for $3 billion. DDR is putting 15% of equity toward this part of the transaction, which still needs to be approved by Inland’s board of directors.

The centers, totaling 46.3 million sf, are mostly located in the Southeast states of Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. A majority of the properties, 213, are neighborhood and community centers. The portfolio also includes 91 single-tenant assets as well as three lifestyle/hybrid centers.

Target, with 27 stores, is the largest tenant in the portfolio, taking up 8.5% of space. Wal-Mart, at 19 stores, occupies 8.1% of the centers. The grocer Publix has the most stores in the shopping centers, with 53.

After the deal, DDR will own about 800 shopping centers across the country. Locally based Inland is a subsidiary of the Inland Real Estate Group of Cos., which also owns the 140-center Inland Real Estate Corp. and the 60-property Inland Western Retail Real Estate Trust.

DDR’s purchase follows its announcement last week that it is acquiring nine centers in Brazil in a 50-50 joint-venture deal for $150 million. The JV will also build a 460,000-sf center in the city of Manaus, to be completed in late 2008.

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