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BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI-After a strong first quarter, Taubman Centers has kicked off the second quarter by acquiring a majority interest in The Pier Shops at Caesars in Atlantic City, NJ, executives said at its first-quarter conference call.

This month, the company increased its ownership in the center to a 77.5% controlling interest. The remaining interest continues to be held by project developer Gordon Group Holdings, Greenwich, CT. Taubman assumed management and leasing responsibilities for the center in January 2007, and had owned a 30% interest.

“It is already in the top third of our sales performance,” despite having its first restaurants open in September, after the tourist high season, said Robert Taubman, chairman, president and CEO. “We believe it is a great opportunity and a great long-term investment.”

The Pier Shops opened in June 2006 after numerous construction delays and phased store and restaurant openings since. Retail tenants include Gucci, Coach, Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co., Apple, Burberry, and A/X Armani Exchange. Restaurants include Stephen Buddakan and Continental. Currently, 81 of the center’s potential 100 tenants are open. However, when the project is fully stabilized in two to three years, it should become a top performer.

“We are looking forward to the high season, Memorial Day to Labor Day,” Taubman said. “It is clearly synergistic with our portfolio.”

In addition, the opening of The Mall at Partridge Creek in Clinton Township, MI, remains on track for an October 18 opening. Expansions of Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi, MI; Stamford (CT) Town Center and Waterside Shops at Pelican Bay in Naples, FL, also will open this year. The Shops at Oyster Bay in New York remains in the courts, Taubman said.

In Asia, the company is increasing staff at its Hong Kong office to oversee Macao Studio City in Macao, and has opened an office in Seoul, South Korea to handle the development of New Songdo City, Incheon, South Korea.

For the quarter ended March 31, 2007, funds from operations (FFO) per diluted share was $0.65, an increase of 8.3% from the quarter ended March 31, 2006. Shopping centers were 92.1% leased on March 31, 2007, up 1.2% from the previous year. Tenant sales per square foot increased 8.9% over the first quarter of 2006. Income allocable to common shareholders was $10.4 million, up from $5.4 million the previous year.

Taubman Centers currently owns and/or manages 23 urban and suburban regional and super-regional shopping centers in 11 states.

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