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LEWISVILLE, TX-A 178,300-sf shopping center, with value-add written all over the deal, has been sold by a 15-year owner to a Northern New Jersey partnership. Meanwhile, a Boston-based owner of a newer center in the city has secured $38.5 million to refuel its credit line from last fall’s regional center buy.

The value-add buyer is starting with a repositioning strategy focused on re-tenanting and moderate renovations to the 60%-occupied Garden Park shopping center at 1565 W. Main St., according to William Tourtellotte, vice president of Newtown Square, PA-based GMH Capital Partners. He tells GlobeSt.com that the investment scenario brought 24 offers to the table for the Austin-based seller, Watch Omega Holdings LP. Denton County tax records show Stamford, CT-based GE Capital Real Estate’s local office is the asset’s servicing agent.

Tourtellotte says the buyer and the competition made offers that reflected the upside for the no minimum-ask listing. “We felt like we got a good price from a return basis, recognizing the income’s going to go up when you re-tenant the center,” says Tourtellotte, who partnered with GMH’s Shawn Lubic on the sale. “All were willing to recognize the upside in their pricing. It wasn’t sold on a distressed pricing.”

Local sources say the 26-tenant shopping center, assessed at slightly more than $5.9 million, sold for less than half of the replacement cost. The dynamics of the deal, he says, most likely brought offers in the $50-per-sf range.

For several years, the seller has been trying to find a replacement anchor for the 21-year-old center, situated on 21.2 acres in the city’s older commercial district. Although the 30,000-sf Beall’s store has long been dark, anchor Stein Mart did renew a 37,213-sf lease while the deal was working its way through the channels, Tourtellotte says.

Tourtellotte says the class B center was “well maintained, but will be getting some “enhancements” as the new owner sets his plan into play, which could include adding some pad sites. “Once someone pops in an anchor, you’ll see a synergy boost,” says the broker. As for the new owner’s identity, all the dealmaker will say about GP Shopping LLC is it’s an entrepreneurial private buyer with a nationwide portfolio of predominately retail properties.

Five miles to the north, the owner of the 373,347-sf Vista Ridge Village at 2325 S. Stemmons Freeway inked a $38.5-million refinancing to refuel its till from the September 2006 purchase. Borrower of record, GRE Vista Ridge LP of Boston, got a five-year loan at 65% leverage from AIG Global Investment Group of New York City. The 5.5% fixed-rate loan will be serviced by Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP.

“From a challenge perspective, it was just getting the bells and whistles built into the financing,” HFF director Todd Sugimoto in Los Angeles tells GlobeSt.com. He says the Boston owner tapped its credit line to acquire the class A center so the refinancing was just part of the plan when it was bought. Sugimoto and an HFF’s team in Dallas, senior managing director Paul Brindley and managing director Tom Goodson, arranged the financing.

Vista Ridge Village is part of a regional hub of newer retail that has lured tenants away from the city’s older corridors. Built in 1994, Vista Ridge Village is 95% leased to a heavily weighted mix of national tenants.

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