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SARASOTA, FL-A European investor has acquired the 73,000-sf University Square shopping center on University Drive for $18 million. The seller was Bradenton-based Medallion Homes. The sales price reflects a 6.8% cap rate, Marcus & Millichap senior associate in the Tampa office Ricardo Bovero tells GlobeSt.com.

“The buyer is a home construction company. University Square, which was redeveloped in three phases, was one of its only retail properties,” Bovero says of the decision to sell the property. Bovero represented the buyer.

The property, which is shadow anchored by an Albertson’s supermarket, was 90% occupied at the time of the sale. The buyer acquired the property as part of a 1031 exchange.

The shopping center is located in a high-growth area that is experiencing a lot of development. “University Drive was recently widened from four to six lanes,” Bovero says. “The road connects Sarasota to Bradenton and is experiencing a lot of retail development right now.”

Bovero adds that the transaction posed some challenges due to a loan lock-out period. “The transaction took a while to close because of the loan lock-out,” he says. “Interest rates were climbing during that time.”

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